Message Number: YG6520 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Bruce Williams, DVM
Date: 2001-08-20 22:11:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Biopsy results-eosinopholic gastroententis & Insulinoma

Dear Connie:

> Maggie (4 year old MF) has been diagnosed with insulinoma and
inflammatory bowel disease, specifically eosinophilic gastroenteritis.
> Maggie received an Ivermectin injection with a second injection
scheduled in two weeks. For the insulinoma she is getting .50 ml
Pediapred twice a day for two weeks and dropping down to .25ml twice
a day for three weeks.

Interesting approach to medical treatment of the insulinoma - I am
wondering however, if this dosage regimen may be more apropos for the
EG. When dosing pred for insulinoma, usually you try to start with a
lower dose, check the blood glucose, then increase it as th lower
dosage fails to control the hypoglycemia.

Was surgery done here to get a biopsy of the intestine, and was the
insulinoma removed at that time?

> Maggie will be starting a diet of Hill's z/d to try and resolve the
EG symptoms. The vet was out of z/d so she's still on the a/d right
now. I'm also getting some ground emu as a backup since it's my
understanding that they can rebound from the new food and you should
have something "waiting in the wings" so to speak.

I've got to say that's a new one on me. Ground emu. (I guess there
was no pun intended, as all emus are ground birds.)

> From what I'm reading (please correct me if I'm wrong) because she
has the insulinoma the Essiac would not be good for her. I have been
sprinkling a small amount of Slippery Elm Bark on her a/d to sooth
her tummy and was considering adding some acidophilus to her diet.
Would there be any benefit to the acidophilus? Her poopies look like
puddles and aren't formed at all.

Well, I can't comment on the Essiac or Slippery Elm, but if she has
EG, acidophilus is probably not the solution here. The digestive
distress caused by eosinophilic enteritis is because the inflammation
chews up the lining of the intestine, resulting in irratibility,
increased transit time, and loss of significant surface absorptive
area and enzymes. The use of acidophilus is predicated on the theory
that the normal flora are altered in the intestine. While this may
be the case, it is such a small part of the overall problem that
supplementation probably will be of little use. Additionally, we
really are not sure what role acidophilus bacteria play in the ferret
GI tract, if any. Remember that obligate carnivores with a normally
fast GI transit time would be expected to have a different bacterial
makeup than humans.

> Are Ferretone and Ferrevite now out of the question for her? What
treats would be good for her? She doesn't see baby food as a treat,
it's a dietary staple for her now.

Ferretone and Ferretvite may be a bit difficult to absorb without
some improvement in her GI tract. Both have high levels of fat,
which at this point may be the most difficult for her to absorb.
Baby food is actually a very good supplement for ferrets with IBD,
and she can continue on this alone for a month or so to give the anti-
inflammatory medication some time to work.

With kindest regards,

Bruce Williams, dVM