Causes and treatment of facial nerve paralysis in rabbits

Causes and treatment of facial nerve paralysis in rabbits. What are the symptoms of pain caused by rabbit or rabbit facial palsy? How is the disease diagnosed and treated? All about facial paralysis caused by nerve damage in rabbits.

Facial palsy and palsy is a disorder of the cranial nerve – a nerve that originates in the brain (opposite the spine). Dysfunction of this nerve can cause muscle paralysis or weakness in the ears, eyelids, lips, and nostrils. Irritability and the inability to move the eyes and facial muscles can lead to decreased tear production, which can lead to other eye conditions.

In rabbits, facial nerve palsy is sometimes observed following an ear or mouth infection. Short breeds and folds tend to increase the risk of facial paralysis and paralysis.

Symptoms and Types of Facial Palsy in Rabbits

Findings Related to Ear Disorders

  • Tilt your head
  • Drooping ears and lips pain (especially when opening the mouth)
  • White, dull, opaque and bulging tissue in the ear
  • History of ear infections, especially vestibular (or inner ear) infections

Other symptoms

  • Lots of drool
  • Food falls out of mouth
  • Facial asymmetry (that is, the face looks crooked or uneven)
  • Rubbing eyes
  • Corneal clouding, eye discharge and redness
  • Inability to close eyelids symmetrically
  • Narrowed nostrils, runny nose
  • Difficulty walking or balancing (if the nervous system is affected)

Causes of facial nerve paralysis in rabbits

  • Inflammation – direct neuritis due to middle or outer ear infection, dental abscess, bacterial infection
  • Trauma – peripheral fracture or direct trauma to the facial nerve
  • Tumors – Brain Tumors
  • Toxicity – poisoned poisoned poisoned
  • Disorders of one or both ears


Diagnosis of facial nerve palsy in rabbits

You will need to provide your veterinarian with a thorough history of the rabbit’s health and symptom onset. There are several possible causes of this condition, so your veterinarian will most likely use a differential diagnosis, a procedure guided by a more in-depth examination of obvious external symptoms.

Explicitly, rule out each of the more common causes until the disease is properly addressed and can be treated appropriately.

Your doctor will first differentiate between unilateral and symmetrical disease, facial nerve palsy, and simple ear infections, and will also look for other nerve weaknesses.

X-rays of the ear and skull will be done to look for obvious lumps or swelling, while a computed tomography (CT) scan can be used to get a better look at the inner structure of the ear and box. skull. These imaging tools will determine the presence of tumors.

Standard laboratory tests include complete blood analysis, chemical blood analysis, complete blood count, and urinalysis. Your veterinarian will seek to determine the presence and type of infection, which may show up during blood and urinalysis. Normally, blood and urinalysis are normal

If symptoms appear to be neurogenic, a sample of cerebrospinal fluid (CSF) can be obtained for analysis, which may help detect brainstem disease.

How to Treat Rabbit Facial Palsy

Rabbits are usually tested on an outpatient basis, but hospitalization may be required for initial diagnosis and evaluation, or if your rabbit is critically ill.

Depending on the doctor’s findings, surgery may be necessary. But treatment usually involves rinsing and cleaning the ear with a cleaning solution, wiping the ear with a cotton swab, and vacuuming any debris from the ear. Artificial tears can also be used to prevent dry eye.

Life and management

It is important that your rabbit continues to eat during and after treatment. Encourage drinking by offering fresh water, a drizzle of green leafy vegetables or flavored water and vegetable juices, and a variety of fresh, moist vegetables such as cilantro, lettuce, parsley, carrot sticks, dandelion, spinach, bok choy, and high-quality vegetable hay.

Also, feed the rabbit food regularly, as the initial goal is to get the rabbit to eat and maintain its weight and nutritional status. If your rabbit refuses these foods, you will need to inject the porridge mixture with a syringe until it is able to eat again on its own. Do not feed your rabbit high-carb, high-fat nutritional supplements unless specifically advised by your veterinarian.

Discuss eye care with your veterinarian, as the affected eye may need lubrication due to decreased tear production. Also, keep in mind that the other side may also be affected. Monitor your rabbit and report any changes to your veterinarian.

If your rabbit has a severe head tilt, you will need to support its head in place to prevent suffocation. Muscle paralysis is usually permanent, but as healing and muscle thickening develops, a natural “squeeze” may occur, reducing facial asymmetry (misalignment).

In addition to the physical changes this paralysis can cause, most rabbits tolerate this neurological deficit and adapt without much effort.

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