Message Number: YG12767 | New FHL Archives Search
From: dr_bruce_williams
Date: 2002-04-26 13:49:00 UTC
Subject: Re: kidney infection or lymphoma?

--- In Ferret-Health-list@y..., "fantasticferret"
<fantasticferret@y...> wrote:
> I am concerned about my 6 and a half year old ferret, Phoebe. She
> had blood in her urine yesterday morning, and I took her to the
> He said that she had adrenal problems, but she also had an enlarged
> kidney, which was probably the cause of the bleeding. He thinks
> kidney might possibly have an infection, but from the size he
> it's more likely lymphoma. The vet didn't want to try a biopsy
> away because it's too invasive, so I am giving her antibiotics for
> days. If her kidney doesn't show any improvement, the vet will then
> give her prednisone to help shrink her kidney to make her more
> comfortable.

A non-invasive technique that may help to define what is going on
with the kidney would be an ultrasound test. In cases of infection
in which the kidney is enlarged, you can often see distention of the
renal pelvis and collecting ducts - a condition known as
hydronephrosis. A kidney with lymphoma would be solidly cellular on
the ultrasound, with no areas of lucency.

I don't really believe in a ten-day course of antibiotics as the best
way to go here. Even if it is do to infection, the antibiotics will
not shrink the kidney, because the damage and stretching is already
done. And employing prednisone with the possibility of an infection
is not a good idea.

If ultrasound is not a possibility, then I would likely go right to
an abdominal exploration. AT this point, you can visually inspect
the kidney, and if it is not viable, remove it. At the same time you
can also surgically treat the adrenal disease. What if the kidney
problem is not kindey after all, but a large adrenal tumor (the
adrenal gland sits right next to the kidney.

Ther are some diseases that you can play around with for a while
trying various dosages and combinations of drugs, but an enlarged
kidney is not one of them.

With kindest regards,

Bruce Williams, DVM