Pet Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) Spring, TX

A genetic eye condition called progressive retinal atrophy (PRA) causes blindness in canines.

Pet Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

What is progressive retinal atrophy (PRA)?

At North Houston Veterinary Ophthalmology, we have dealt with progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), which is a genetic disease affecting the retina. While genetic defect resulting in PRA can be present in many breeds, including mixed breeds, it is more commonly diagnosed in Labrador retrievers, miniature schnauzers, miniature and toy poodles, Siberian huskies, Irish setters, and Cocker spaniels.

What are the clinical signs of PRA?

Since PRA affects the rod (black and white) photoreceptors initially, the most common early symptom of the disease is visual difficulty in low light conditions or “night blindness.”  As the disease progresses, the cone (color) photoreceptors are eventually affected, resulting in complete blindness. This process typically spans months to years. Other clinical signs include dilation of the pupils and cataracts in some cases.

What are the treatments for PRA?

Unfortunately, there is no treatment for PRA currently. Potential therapies, such as retinal transplantation, are under investigation.