Message Number: YG6503 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Bruce Williams, DVM
Date: 2001-08-19 21:54:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Adrenal tissue vrs. ectopic tissue???

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., cjbandit@a... wrote:
> My ferret had bilateral adrenalectomy?? almost 2 years ago. The
left was
> surgically removed and the right frozen with cryosurgery. Bandit's
had a
> host of problems since contracting ECE back in Feb. of this year
(so it's
> been really hard to know what's been going on with him). Recently
I noticed
> he's been lethargic and his tail is going bald so I grew concerned
> if his adrenal disease was back???
> I recently ran the TP and it was ever so slightly elevated, it was
> that I wait six months and retest. Well, Bandit's condition was
not getting
> better-his appetite was less and he continues to chomp and lip
smack during
> and after feedings and he's always sleeping of laying flat on his
> I took him to a ferret knowledgeable vet in NJ who
> o ran his BG in house which was 45-49 and did an ultrasound which
showed his
> right adrenal gland back-he said it was slightly larger then normal
about the
> size of an eraser. All along I thought Bandit did not need hormone
> replacements because he had ectopic tissue-now I find out it's the
> adrenal gland back!!
> My vet thinks the ECE in the past could have very well been or led
to IBD and
> that may be causing the low BG or them more obvious insulinoma.
> x-rays also revealed a lot of gas in the colon which was the same
last year
> when he had x-rays. My vet prescribed a couple of things 1) .50 of
> pedia-pred (1x) a day for two weeks 2) pro-zyme in his food to help
break the
> nutrients down 3) a sprinkle of tylan powder on his food for bad
bacteria in
> intestines and 4) clavimox twice a day for 10 days (because he has
> I am following the pred and carafate treatment protocol-it is very
hard to
> disguise the taste of the tylan and I have the pro-zyme on order.
I will
> wait after the pred to give the clavimox because I don't want to
stress him
> out to much.
> Can you give me your opinion on the treatment I'm following or
suggestions on
> what you think is a good idea to ask my vet or have him do??
> Bandit is 5 but very fragile and I'm real nervous about putting him
> another surgery- I can't afford to start Lupron this early on so my
> suggested waiting for clinical signs first...
> Also Bandit does have cataracts on his eyes as I suspected?? what
causes them
> and what can I do about it??

Dear Christina:

Bandit certainly has had his share of problems.

IBD generally does not result in marked hypoglycemia in the reange in
which you mention. It is likely that there is an insulinoma in

It is difficult to comment with any clarity as to what is going on
with the right adrenal. Regrowth of a previously extirpated adrenal
is never a good thing - and is often associated with malignancy.
However, as we all know, right adrenal surgery, due to its location
is a difficult process. at best.

I do believe that before too long, that insulinoma will prove to be
clinical, adn at that point, with both problems already diagnosed,
surgery will be the best option. While he is indeed fragile, he will
be best served by getting him into the best pre-op condition and
doing the surgery when he is at his peak rather than waiting until he
is well into clinical decline.

When the TP is postivie - it's positive. Retesting in six months
generally only makes it more positive - I don't generally see them go

Regarding the use of Tylan - it's success has been anecdotal in cases
of IBD at best, but it certainly can't hurt.

With kindest regards,

Bruce Williams, dVM