Message Number: YG1822 | New FHL Archives Search
From: K. Crassi
Date: 2001-03-28 20:38:00 UTC
Subject: Potential splenectomy

Ever since Wicket was a youngster, his spleen has been steadily increasing
in size. He has had no other health problems. He will be 7 years old in
July. Aside from what I consider a normal slowing down due to age, he is
not showing any signs of ill health, except that currently he seems to have
some kind of infection (not mites or yeast) in one ear which will be
treated with Tresaderm.

So I took him to my vet tonight to see what they thought about doing a
splenectomy. It's very large, and though it hasn't obviously increased in
size lately, it does seem to be weighing him down a bit now and I can only
imagine that it would be rather uncomfortable to haul it around all the
time. He still eats fine and poops fine and tries to wardance, but it's
kind of hard to do when your belly is full of spleen.

We tried to get some blood for a workup. Although he is a very good ferret
and held still, she was only able to get enough blood to do a quick blood
glucose using a Glucometer (like diabetics use). The reading was 72,
although the thing was running on low battery and she wasn't sure if that
would affect the reading or not. His spleen feels normal except for the
size, and there are no enlarged lymph nodes although she did think his
tonsils were slightly prominent.

She would like me to put him on prednisone for a week or so and then go
back for another blood glucose before doing any surgery. I'm not sure why
a slightly low glucose would preclude surgery - after all, surgery is the
treatment for insulinoma.

In any event, I'd like some feedback from the vets on the list. And for
Dr. Williams - if we decide to go ahead with surgery, would you be
interested in getting a spleen the size of Texas to add to your collection?

"The eternal difference between right and wrong does not fluctuate.
It is immutable. And if the moral order does not change, then it
imposes on us obligations toward God and man. Duty, then, requires
the willingness to accept responsibility and to sacrifice one's
desires to a higher law." --Patrick Henry
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