Progressive Rod Cone Degeneration (PRCD) / Generalised Progressive Retinol Atrophy (GPRA)

The genetic disorder, prcd-GPRA , causes cells in the retina at the back of the eye to degenerate and die, even though the cells seem to  develop normally early in life. The “rod” cells operate in low light levels and are the first to lose normal function. Night blindness results.

Then the “cone” cells gradually lose their normal function in full light situations. Most affected dogs will eventually be blind. Typically, the clinical disease is recognized first in early adolescence or early adulthood. Since age at onset of disease varies among breeds, you should read specific information for your dog.

Diagnosis of retinal disease can be difficult. Conditions that seem to be prcd-GPRA might instead be another disease and might not be inherited. OptiGen’s genetic test assists in making the diagnosis. It’s important to remember that not all retinal disease is GPRA and not all GPRA is the prcd form of GPRA. Annual eye exams by a veterinary ophthalmologist will build a history of eye health that will help to diagnose disease.