Message Number: YG6768 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Caitlyn M. Martin
Date: 2001-08-29 10:51:00 UTC
Subject: Re: [Ferret-Health-list] Adrenal problem?

Hi, Bonnie,

If Pebbles has a swollen vulva along with hair loss, yes, she likely needs
adrenal surgery soon. Several people pointed out that adrenal disease is
rarely an emergency. That is because adrenal tumors are rarely malignant
carcinomas. The thing is, until you have the affected gland surgically removed
there is no way to tell if the tumor is benign or malignant. Our Pertwee had
an aggressive malignancy. He lost both adrenal glands within five weeks of
each other. When the left was taken there was no sign of a problem in the
right, yet two weeks later the symptoms started coming back with a vengeance.
It is entirely possible that had we not treated Pertwee promptly that his
condition could have become serious. It is even possible, given enough time,
that we could have lost him.

Adrenal disease is curable. The cure is surgery. The cost you cited
($450-$500) is typical around here too. I understand that you cannot afford
that right now. Please, look into payment plans or doing it on credit and
paying off the surgical cost as you can afford to. I know it is a lot of money
for a lot of people. Keith and I are not made of money, trust me. I know also
that, like most everyone on this list, you love your ferret and don't want to
see her suffer or, heaven forbid, die. Pebbles can be with you, happy and
healthy, for quite a few years to come. Three of our ferrets have had adrenal
surgeries (Kerr Avon and Ryo-Ohki both had left adrenal glands removed, plus
Pertwee's bilateral) and all have fully recovered and are fine.

FWIW, if someone had told me up front what Pertwee's care would cost me (he had
several medical problems over an 18 month period), my answer, like yours would
have been that there was no way I could afford it. It's put a crimp in my
budget for a year, and I am just now getting out of debt. OTOH, Pertwee is my
wildest, craziest, most wired weasel, and he is lots and lots of fun to have
around. We absolutely love him, and I know that I have no regrets about the
money spent on him over the course of his life so far.

Please, for Pebbles' sake, try and find a way to afford the surgery. If you
really and truly absolutely cannot find a way, please consider giving her up
for adoption to someone who can.

All the best,
Caity and the tumultuous 10 (two of which are fosters)