If you have a cat that ventures outdoors (or you're a cat person with many cats), be especially careful when cleaning the litter box.
Why? Cats hunt rodents. Rodents often harbor a parasite called Toxoplasma. The eggs or "oocysts" of the Toxoplasma then come out in the cat feces. If you don't wash your hands meticulously, the oocysts can make it into your food, and then the back of your eye, where they can cause Ocular Toxoplasmosis, with sudden and permanent vision loss. You can also get Toxoplasmosis by ingesting uncooked meat or shellfish .This week's New England Journal of Medicine highlighted a classic "headlight in the fog" photograph of this condition.
|Image courtesy of the New England Journal of Medicine|
Treatment of this condition is accomplished with oral antibiotics and steroids.
Paul Krawitz, M.D., Founder
VisiVite Eye Vitamins