Addie after a recent snow storm. She loves the snow!
As the time gets nearer for us to depart the country, we worry more and more about Addie. Because we will be flying next week, we had Addie’s blood work tested again to see if there were any improvements from a month ago, or at least hoped that the numbers had stabilized. The results were not good at all. Her ALP and ALT are still rising at an alarming rate. See grid below:
||75 – 125
||5.5 – 7.6
||.4 – 1.4
After the last blood work, we did increase her Hepagin-C up to 4 capsules/day and added Sam-E at 400mg/day. However, that has not seemed to help. I have a call into the vet to see what recommendations he has. It could very well point to liver damage/failure, but it could also still be a few other things such as thyroid or possibly Cushings though Dr. Friedly did not feel that Cushings was a possibility last month.
We are still also waiting on Addie’s MSU test results to come back. That is a test for a thyroid issue which Dr. Friedly did not rule out last month.
In addition we found out yesterday she has a yeast infection in her ears, so she is receiving some nice ear cleanings 2 times per day. She loves those! NOT.
On the bright side, she doesn’t seem to effected by all of this. She still likes to hang out with us continually, she still plays with her toys each day, and still gets super excited when we come home. She also does not seem to be in pain. She sleeps a lot, and does not have the energy she did even a year ago, but is that a health issue or old age? We just don’t know.
After Addie’s last UTI we had her blood tested because of a high specific gravity reading from a urine sample. That blood test showed higher than normal Creatinine and Blood Urea Nitrogen (BUN) levels which indicated kidney trouble/failure.
On the advise of our holistic vet, Dr. Friedly, we had her blood re-tested about a month later. The results of that test showed that the Creatinine and BUN levels had returned to the normal range (although at the high-end of normal) but that her alanine aminotransferase (ALT) levels now high. In fact, within the 4 weeks between blood tests the ALT (which is a liver indicator) had increased very rapidly and dramatically.
ALT measures the amount of this enzyme in the blood. ALT is found mainly in the liver, but also in smaller amounts in the kidneys camera, heart camera, muscles, and pancreas camera. ALT was formerly called serum glutamic pyruvic transaminase (SGPT).
ALT is measured to see if the liver is damaged or diseased. Low levels of ALT are normally found in the blood. But when the liver is damaged or diseased, it releases ALT into the bloodstream, which makes ALT levels go up. Most increases in ALT levels are caused by liver damage.
We are already giving Addie Hepagen-C for liver therapy but we had been giving her only about two-thirds the dosage as recommended on the bottle. So, for the time being we are upping her dosage of Hepagen-C to that recommended for her size.
We will be getting another blood test at the end of November to see how things are going.
Things have been going very well with Addie as of late. No cold paw incidents, she is eating well, and is about as active as a 13 1/2 year old girl can be! She does have some stability issues, but I believe that is caused more from losing muscle mass from age and her vestibular incident last year.
However, over the past 2 weeks, we have noticed that she cannot hold her bladder as long as normal. She occasionally has to get up in the middle of the night and can only go about 5 hours. Not like when she has had urinary tract infections (UTI’s) in the past though. She also was drinking a lot more water.
We took her to Dr. Friedly last week to see if he could find the cause. We were thinking the worst.. not sure what that was, but possibly kidney issues. He ran blood work, and all was relatively normal. We then did a urinalysis today. Major infection. Another UTI. Although a major infection is not great, I will take it over kidney failure, etc.
So our girl is on antibiotics and some other UTI meds, to help her out. Going forward, she will also be getting some holistic UTI chews to help keep more infections from occurring. This is probably her 4th UTI within the last 18 months. The vet said not much we can do to help prevent them, it is just her less-effective immune system, but hopefully the meds and chews will help.
July 16, 2008
After crying and feeling hopeless for most of 24 hours, we decided to do some research on Hemangiosarcoma as well as any alternative options to chemo.
Rob came across a drug called Neoplasene. It reported some amazing results in dogs with all types of cancer. He made a call to Dr. Fox at Buck Mountain Botanicals to purchase some of the medicine but was told that only a veterinarian could order. On Thursday, he had our local veterinarian order it for us for Monday delivery.
I still researched all weekend. The bad news was that there was not much information about neoplasene being used on dogs with Hemangiosarcoma. There were very few cases to be found.
That is the reason for this blog.
We want to post about how we are attempting to improve the quality and quantity of Addie’s remaining time with us.
Our hope is that it will help others that follow with our same struggle.