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Practical guide to ocular ultrasonography in horses and farm animals
  1. Gayle Hallowell

    Gayle Hallowell graduated from Cambridge in 2002 and subsequently completed an internship in equine studies and a residency in equine medicine and critical care, both at the Royal Veterinary College (RVC). She is currently a lecturer in large animal internal medicine and critical care at Nottingham. She holds a PhD for studies on aortic valve prolapse in horses, funded by the Horserace Betting Levy Board. She is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Internal Medicine.

  2. Timothy Potter

    Timothy Potter graduated from the Royal Veterinary College (RVC) in 2003 and completed a residency in dairy herd medicine and surgery based at the RVC and the Shepton Veterinary Group. He is currently undertaking a PhD on the pharmacology of antimicrobials in calf pneumonia, funded by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, at the RVC. He is also studying for the RCVS certificate in cattle health and production.


ULTRASONOGRAPHY is an underused imaging modality in practice for the examination of the large animal eye, especially in food-producing animals. It can be performed easily using ultrasound equipment that is readily available to the large animal veterinary surgeon and can provide valuable diagnostic and prognostic information quickly and cheaply. It allows visualisation and examination of the eye or its internal structure that would otherwise be difficult to assess due to eyelid swelling or eyelid closure following trauma, opacification of the cornea or anterior chamber, or because of lens and vitreal opacities. It also allows investigation of exophthalmos and the extent of tumour progression, particularly squamous cell carcinoma in cattle. This article describes how to carry out ocular ultrasound examination in horses and farm animals, and highlights normal findings and some commonly encountered abnormalities seen in these species.

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