Message Number: YG4025 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Bruce Williams, DVM
Date: 2001-05-26 23:40:00 UTC
Subject: Re: What's difference between ECE and heliocobacter and the
other intestinal stuff

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., cjbandit@a... wrote:
> > I have a couple of puzzling questions and I wondered if you could
> shed some
> > light here. First of all what is the difference between
> heliocobacter (sp?)
> > and ECE and is the treatment the same.

The differences are many, and a comprehensive reivew is beyond the
scope of the list - you might want to spend some time on the
Internet - there are a lot of sites that deal with these subjects.

In hsort, Helicobacter is a bacteria that results in chronic
infection of the stomach, and eventually destroys the stomach's
lining, markedly impairing the animals ability to secrete acid and
digest food. ECE is a viral infection of the small intestine which
results in a markedly decrease surface area for the absorption of the
food once in a digestible state. Additionally, there is less surface
available for absorption of water as well.

The treatments is different. There is no significant treatment
available for viruses, so we simply support the ferrets with ECE
until the body can heal itself. There are a number of treatments for
Helicobacter available (bacteria can be treated, and antibiotics are
the key.

How can you really
> distinguish one
> > from the other?

Certainly the best way is to do a biopsy, as you suggest, but a good
practitioner can evaluate the clinical signs, consistency of feces,
etc. and come to a fairly useful diagnosis.

For that matter the same question goes for IBD-EE-
> IBS and
> >'s just so confusing-I guess the answer is Biopsy???
> but what's
> > involved in that procedure and is it risky for a six yr. old
> ferret?? What
> > exactly has to be biopsied???

IBD, EE,and colitis are all inflammatory diseases of the intestine or
colon. You may want to look at my site at for
more information on these conditions. It would be all night to
describe them here! IBD and EE would require an intestinal biopsy -
colitis, requires a biopsy of the colon.

> >
> > Second question about worms- you had said tapeworms can look like
> rice in the
> > stool by any chance could they look like the seeds found in the
> poops>>

No - tapeworms look like rice grains - if you see the feces just
after it has been passed, you can even see them wiggle!

With kindest regards,

Bruce H. Williams, DVM, DACVP
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