Date: 2001-04-02 20:51:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Low blood sugar but no physical signs
Thank you for your response. I'm hoping you are correct and there
was some lab errors, however the doc is usually back with a reading
in about ten minutes. Perhaps the machine he uses is not working
correctly. I was hoping that his levels are actually higher than
they sound - it's frightening to hear such levels. I may take him to
another local vet just for the blood test on a different machine. I
don't want to stress him out too much though, so maybe just treating
him with the prednisone and watching him (which I would do whether he
was a 20 or a 70)is my best bet and to just let it go from there. Is
there any reason I would really want to know exactly what the actual
number is if I'm going to treat him the same either way?
Thanks again for your help. I really respect your opinion.
--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., "Bruce Williams, DVM" <williams@e...>
> 21 is too low to go without some type of clinical symptom.
> One explanation for low values in apparently normal animals is lab
> error (which I unfortunately see on a regular basis.)
> The most common reason for this error is poor handling of the
> sample. Red blood cells have the ability to utilize the glucose in
> the serum to continue their vital processes once the blood is
> from the body. If the sample is not quickly spun down and the red
> cells removed, then they will continue to utilize the glucose in
> sample to maintain their own cellular processes.
> Usually, the samples are clotted and ready to spin within 5
> The fact of the matter is that during office hours, many clinics
> very busy, and often don't have the time to spin down samples
> immediately. Few clinics have full-time lab personnel - usually one
> of the techs handles bloodwork as well as other chores.
> also come up. If the blood sample gets parked for 15-20 minutes,
> decrease in glucose is noticeable.
> While there is always the possibility for an animal to adapt to a
> blood sugar, I would think that one this low (only 25% of the
> would have to result in some symptoms.)
> With kindest regards,
> Bruce H. Williams, DVM, DACVP
> Join the Ferret Health List at