Common names or abbreviations:

bulletChronic Superficial Keratitis
bulletPlasmoma (third eyelid and or conjunctiva involvement)
bulletPlasmacytic Lymphocytic Conjunctivitis of the third eyelid
bulletKeratitis superficialis vasulosa pannosa pigmentosa chronica
bulletKeratitis Ueberreiter




Description or definition:

Pannus is an immune mediated disease. Some sub-cellular change has occurred in the cornea which the immune system then recognizes as abnormal. The immune system then attacks the cornea almost as if the cornea was foreign or transplanted tissue.

Pannus is a progressive, non painful, inflammatory disease of the cornea, conjunctiva, and sometimes the third eyelids (when affecting the third eyelid, it is termed "atypical pannus" or "plasmoma").

There is no cure for Pannus, but several medications are available to help keep it in check. Without the medication, pannus leads to blindness.

The cause of pannus is unknown. Certain breeds (German Shepherd, Belgian Tervuren, Border Collie, Dachshund, Greyhound and Siberian Husky) have an increased incidence of pannus, which suggests that there is genetic predisposition. However, the mode of inheritance is unknown.

Ultra violet rays in sunlight are thought to trigger pannus. High altitude also plays a role in pannus as it can cause the disease to be more severe and harder to treat.


Pannus usually presents between ages 3-5 years old.

Pannus starts in the outer region of the cornea and expands toward the center. It shows up as either vascular or pigmented discoloration on the otherwise clear cornea.

It affects both eyes simultaneously in the majority of cases.

Commonly, opaque cholesterol deposits will form.


Pannus can only be controlled not cured. Treatment is for the rest of the dog’s life, and must be consistently provided. The goal of treatment is to prevent the dog from going blind.

Medications used to treat pannus include corticosteroids and cyclosporine A. Surgery and radiation are used for severe pannus that doesn’t respond to medication.


Links to sites about this disease:







This summary provided by:

bulletSusan Olson
bulletKarma Kennels



Dedicated to improving the health of ISSR Shiloh Shepherds.


Copyright © 1998 - 2012. Shiloh Shepherd Dog™ Club of America.
All rights reserved. Revised: January 2008

The information on this website was written by ISSR breeders and other concerned individuals, however we are are NOT veterinarians. This information is being provided as a general overview, from information we were able to find about each disease through our own research. These summaries are not intended to be relied upon as medical or veterinary advice, nor do we consider ourselves experts in the veterinary field or in any of these conditions. While we do our best to provide the most up to date information, new research is constantly being done on these diseases. We recommend that you do further study and talk to your veterinarian on any topics you see here, as we cannot guarantee that the information posted here is the most current information available.  This site was originally designed and maintained by Debbie Knatz.