Performing vagal maneuvers on epileptic pets can help prevent or control seizures. Recent literature in both human and veterinary
medicine supports the idea that ocular compression stimulates GABAergic mechanisms in the brain and can be a useful adjunctive
treatment for epilepsy.1-3 Teach clients how to compress their pets' eyeballs every five to 10 seconds for five to 10 minutes at a time when pets are
displaying preictal behavior or experiencing seizures. And tell clients to contact you immediately if the seizures are not
controlled after five minutes.
1. Munana, K.R. et al.: Use of vagal nerve stimulation as a treatment for refractory epilepsy in dogs. JAVMA 221 (7):977-983;
2. Vonck, K. et al.: Long-term results of vagus nerve stimulation in refractory epilepsy. Seizure 8 (6):328-334; 1999.
3. Speciale, J.; Stahlbrodt, J.E.: Use of ocular compression to induce vagal stimulation and aid in controlling seizures in
seven dogs. JAVMA 214 (5):663-665; 1999.
Dr. Georgina Barone, DACVIM (neurology)