Message Number: YPG64 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Vicki Montgomery
Date: 2006-11-10 17:14:43 UTC
Subject: Re: [ferrethealth] Insulin/Blood Glucose levels

Hey Jeff;

Just some thoughts here...

I recently asked Dr Jerry Murray about an insulin reading, that someone sent to me, as I had never heard a concern for that before. His reply was that the insulin reading did not matter. I assume this is because that reading is associated with the BG level and it is the presence or absense of sugar that is crucial.

Unless I have learned incorrectly about insulinoma, it is the tumors on the pancreas that causes the insulinoma. Some tumors are large enough to remove and I personally would recommend that IF Neo is a good candidate for surviving surgery, but understand - Although a doctor removes many tumors, there is a very good chance that they will NOT be able to remove them all and many many could be left.

A steriod is usually used to control the BG level for the ferret until he passes, which could be soon to 2 or 3 years, depending on your care protocol, his physical and emotional response to your care, the quality of the meds, and well other factors beyond your control. I think you're doing great pursuing a more natural and holistic care program. Look to homeopathic healers to gain more knowledge.

Now just out of curiosity = why are you putting his kibble, a carbohydrate based food in his soup. The carbs convert to sugar upon digestion.

Now one may argue that insulinoma is a disease of Low BG so why would sugar be a problem. Well, if the at present research studies are correct, then sugar and carbs are contributing to, maybe even causing, insulinoma in our fuzzies, and seems to me that it follows that IF this is accurate, then to continue feeding carbs and sugar will only worsen the disease.

So seems to me that you would if not totally drop the kibble you would maybe reduce it's usage as you increase the addition of meat (raw or cooked, but probably cooked is best at least in the beginning) until all kibble is replaced with animal muscle protein -meat. Just a thought...

Now Hopefully we'll hear from the experts.


Jeff <> wrote:
Hello To All:

I wrote recently about our 4 year old male Neo, who we believed has insulinoma. We took him for an ultrasound on Tuesday, at which time he also had a blood test for insulin and BG levels. Well, the ultrasound found an 8.7 mm tumor that appears to be on the pancreas, as well as a slightly enlarged left adrenal gland, and the blood test came back at levels of 196 for insulin and 30 for blood glucose. I think it's pretty clear now that Neo does have insulinoma. My questions for the group would be these, and any advice or suggestions are very much appreciated:

1) What would 'normal' levels of insulin be, and does 196 indicate that the insulinoma may be far along in its progression?

2) Is there any way of knowing or making an educated guess from the levels of 196 and 30 whether or not the 8.7 mm tumor would probably be the primary cause of the insulinoma, or whether there is also a good chance that he has many smaller tumors in the pancreas. I would be more inclined to choose surgery for him if I believed it was the tumor that was the primary culprit.

3) A few days ago I started adding some brewers yeast powder to his 'gruel', as I had read in a couple of places that it is high in chromium and does a good job of regulating BG and insulin levels. We have noticed a big difference in his energy level since then. He had been lethargic and weak most of the time, but since adding the brewers yeast he is now playful more often than not. However, he does still get the shakes when he comes out of his cage. Has anyone else had experience with brewers yeast, and if so, should I expect the improvement to be only temporary? His gruel consistest of: Totally Ferret kibble, sent through a food processor, with some Uncle Jim's Duk Soup Mix, FerretVite, Slippery Elm bark powder (for his ulcers), and the recently added brewers yeast. We add water and mix it all up, then heat it slightly in a microwave. Neo is eating heartily about 5 times a day, and his stools and urine are regular and good. He continues at the same levels of azium (.5 ml
daily) and proglycem (diazoxide, 50 mg/ml, .8 ml given daily), as well as amoxicillin and carafate for his ulcers.

Thanks very much for any insights or suggestions.

Jeff and Neo

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Vicki Montgomery
Tricks and Treats Rescue
Greater Houston/Galveston Texas
713-472-6599 or - Join ferret care and share your care experiences
"Until he extends the circle of his compassion to all living things, man will not himself find peace." ~ Dr. Albert Schweitzer