Message Number: YG2799 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Bruce Williams, DVM
Date: 2001-04-20 19:56:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Champ Again

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., katharine <shurcool@i...> wrote:
> We're baaaaaack! Champ (renal failure) is looking very pale
> to me. I was cutting his nails earlier and could hardly see
> where to cut. I started looking closely at him and he just
> looks downright pale all over!
> He had his first injection of Epogen (my Gawd is that stuff
> expensive! I just about had a stroke when I picked up the
> tiny vial the other day) yesterday and has been getting
> Lixotinic for about a week now. Is this the anemia???

Yes, I think so. The red blood cells are the part of the blood that
makes it red, so it follows that the less red blood cells, the more
pale he will be.

Should he "pink" back up soon? How soon should I see a
> difference?

That remains to be seen. At this point, it is more definitive to
take a blood sample to note the level of the red blood cells (the
packed cell volume) and compare it with a level in several days,
rather than to try to make this determination by the level of color
in the ferrets nails and gums.

Regarding the effectiveness of EpoA in ferrets with chronic renal
failure, I must say that it has not worked a lot of times. I am
hoping that Champ is a case in which it works well.

And, by the way, what's the next step to look
> for? He's been through low potassium and anemia now. What
> normally happens next and next and next?

In the natural progression of chronic renal failure, the next sign
would likely be one of the following - elevated BUN, elevated
creatinine, or elevated phosphorus (or a combination of the same.)

With kindest regards,

Bruce H. Williams, DVM, DACVP
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