Send to

Choose Destination
Vet Ophthalmol. 2009 Nov-Dec;12(6):350-6. doi: 10.1111/j.1463-5224.2009.00727.x.

Clinical presentation, treatment, and outcome of dacryocystitis in rabbits: a retrospective study of 28 cases (2003-2007).

Author information

Section of Ophthalmology, Equine Department, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, CH-8057 Zurich, Switzerland.



To document the clinical presentation, diagnostics, treatment, and clinical outcome of rabbits with dacryocystitis.


This retrospective study included 28 rabbits diagnosed with dacryocystitis. Available records of clinical and ophthalmological examinations, bacteriological samplings, diagnostic imaging, and treatment were reviewed. A telephone survey of the owners was conducted to evaluate recovery and recurrences.


The mean age of the 28 rabbits presenting with ocular discharge from the nasolacrimal duct was 4.4 years. In 25 rabbits (89%), dacryocystitis was a unilateral finding. No underlying cause could be determined in 10 animals (35%). Dental malocclusion was observed in 14 rabbits (50%) and rhinitis in two animals (7%), with one animal showing both symptoms (4%). One rabbit (4%) presented with panophthalmitis. Most animals (96%) received topical antibiotic treatment. If necessary, additional topical (acetylcysteine, vitamin A ointment, nonsteroidals) or systemic treatment (antibiotics, nonsteroidals, paramunity inducer, and glucocorticoids) was provided. The mean duration of therapy was 5.8 weeks. The nasolacrimal duct was flushed in 27 of 31 affected eyes (87%). Dentistry was performed in 80% of the animals suffering from malocclusion. Regarding the clinical outcome, 12 animals (43%) showed complete recovery, eight rabbits (28%) were euthanized, three (11%) died due to unrelated causes, and three (11%) were lost to follow-up. Two rabbits (7%) continue to display signs of dacryocystitis and are being treated symptomatically by the owners.


This study reports the clinical presentation, treatment, and outcome of dacryocystitis in rabbits and outlines the importance of examination of the oral cavity, diagnostic imaging, and bacteriologic sampling.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Full text links

Icon for Wiley
Loading ...
Support Center