Message Number: YG4426 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Karen Purcell, DVM
Date: 2001-06-08 18:43:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Mitral valve and adrenal-Surgery?


You wrote:

> I posted this over a week ago and never had any response.
> My five year old gib, Teddy had an echocardiagram performed about a
> month ago. It showed a mild mitral valve insufficiency and a mild
> increase of the left atrium. He is not on any meds at this time. He
> is also showing signs of early adrenal. Slight thinning of fur on
> his back feet and tail, and a really coarse coat. Occasionally, I
> have also seen him bite his cage buddy on the back of the neck.
> My question is: Is it safe to do adrenal surgery on a ferret with
> mild heart problems? Will it extend his life at all, since he has the
> heart trouble? Would it be better to do the Lupron injections for the
> rest of his life?
I wouldn't. Current speculation among ferret vets is that
subclinical unknown heart disease may play a big factor in
post-operative deaths. I prefer not to mess with known heart disease
unless I have no choice in the matter.

> I want to do what's best for my ferret, but I don't want to put him
> through surgery if he could possibly die during the procedure, or if
> it won't increase his life expectancy. I do think the Lupron or
> surgery would improve the quality of his life,in the long run.
> Right now, he's a happy camper. He sleeps a little longer, and is a
> little slower getting started when he wakes up, but he still plays
> and enjoys a good romp with the rest of the crew.
> Also, my vet is very reticent to perform surgery on ferrets with
> heart murmurs, having lost some during or after their procedure.

I completely understand that! I'd go for the lupron, personally.

-Dr. Karen

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