With the significant help of our favorite veterinary ophthalmologist, the late Dr. Paul Jackson, along with our favorite human ophthalmologist, Dr Art Giebel, we removed a cataract from a Macaw.
Before we get on to this surgery, we would like to show you a picture of a beautiful wild Macaw that Dr. P took on a recent trip to Costa Rica. If you click on the photo you can see more about how he teaches wildlife photography around the world.
This page has graphic surgical pictures.
The first step in the process is a thorough physical exam. This is performed immediately prior to surgery.
This young Macaw is enjoying the attention he is getting during his exam
No matter what type of bird, all of them are given a thorough exam prior to surgery. This is a peregrine falcon from our Wildlife Program.
We also perform pre-anesthetic diagnostic tests prior to surgery to make sure there are no internal problems.
This part of the pre-anesthetic blood panel checks the red and white blood cells. It is called a CBC
Birds tend to be more sensitive to anesthesia than most mammals, so special precautions are taken to minimize the risk.
We use general anesthesia because this is delicate surgery and there can be no movement of our patient
In addition to the substantial surgical expertise of our surgeons, this surgery is not possible without special equipment, especially a dual surgical microscope.
A microscopic incision is literally made into the eye near the cornea. The cataract is emulsified just like in people. A new lens is not put in, unlike in people.
Art Giebel, MD
Carl Palazzolo, DVM