Comparison of three tonometers for measuring intraocular pressure in rabbits

Lisa S. Abrams, Susan Vitale, Henry D. Jampel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Purpose. Rabbits are used commonly for the evaluation of drugs and surgery to lower intraocular pressure (IOP). The authors compared the accuracy and variability of the tonometers for measuring IOP in rabbits. Methods. The anterior chamber of adult rabbits was cannulated with a 25-gauge needle connected to an elevated bottle of balanced salt solution. The bottle was raised and lowered to control IOP. A fluid-filled pressure transducer also was placed in the anterior chamber. Intraocular pressure was decreased in increments of 5 to 10 cm H2O from 50 to 0 mm Hg and was recorded with each of these instruments the hand-held applanation tonometer, the Tono-pen XL, and the pneumatonometer. Results. The Tono-pen XL and the hand-held applanation tonometer underestimated the IOP, whereas the pneumatonometer slightly overestimated IOP. Under closed stopcock conditions, at IOPs between 3 and 30 mm Hg, the Tono-pen XL was as accurate as the pneumatonometer but had a smaller variance; the hand-held applanation tonometer had lower accuracy and higher variability. Conclusions. The Tono-pen XL is the tonometer of choice for measuring IOP in rabbits within the range of IOP 3 to 30 mm Hg. All tonometers were less accurate when the IOP was elevated markedly.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)940-944
Number of pages5
JournalInvestigative Ophthalmology and Visual Science
Issue number5
StatePublished - 1996


  • closed stopcock
  • intraocular pressure
  • open stopcock
  • rabbits
  • tonometry
  • variance

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Ophthalmology
  • Sensory Systems
  • Cellular and Molecular Neuroscience


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