Posted by: Adrianna | August 6, 2010

Still hospitalized, not eating

I don’t feel like writing this.

So he ate a little bit overnight and a little bit in the morning when I got back (I went home for a few hours to feed the piglets and shower).  Since then he has turned away from food for the most part.  His case has gotten complicated and is a long story so I’m going to cut to the chase … His collective symptoms including today are:

  1. poor appetite/anorexia
  2. hypersalivation (hyper-drooling) initially
  3. nausea
  4. problems eating (food falling out of mouth, food aversion)
  5. hind limb weakness
  6. lethargy
  7. dull mentation (perks up sometimes though)
  8. myoclonus (muscle twitching) in his face, legs, and shoulders. I first noticed this last night.

Blood work done when he was last hospitalized was unremarkable for him.  We have also considered (some results are pending):

  1. Ileus (too-slow GI tract)
  2. Addison’s disease
  3. Toxoplasmosis
  4. Cryptococcus
  5. Loss of remission (lymphoma)
  6. Pancreatitis
  7. Tick-borne disease
  8. Other stuff eliminated by physical exam

Nothing conclusive so far, so he is being hit with the kitchen sink of GI drugs, fluids, pain medication, and steroids.

No one has any idea why he is twitching.  He is twitching when he is at rest as if he’s asleep and dreaming, but he’s awake.  We are doing some infectious disease testing just in case something has taken advantage of his immuno-compromised state.  I would love it if we found something we could attack with drugs.

Today I decided to add on another chemistry to the blood we’d sent out for a PLI yesterday, just in case something had changed since we’d done a blood chemistry last weekend.  I got the results, and his liver values have doubled in the past few days.  Liver toxicity? Lymphoma resurgence in the liver? They are both bad; if it’s the first one, there is a chance that he’ll heal.  If it’s the latter, he’s up the creek because the life-extending chemo drugs are almost all liver-toxic so a damaged liver cannot withstand chemo.

We have started antibiotics in case this is a liver infection.  That is not terribly likely but it’s possible.  Basically there are no great therapies for the liver; it has to heal itself.  We are giving supportive care to see if this turns around, and I’m considering doing an aspirate of his liver or spleen to look for lymphoma.

I can’t really bear to think about this right now (I’m still at work with him).  I will say that I do not plan on hospitalizing him indefinitely, especially since he is mostly dull, uninterested in food, and intermittently anxious.  That is a reasonable price to pay for a dog that is going home to have good times; it is not a reasonable thing to continue if there is no real hope.



  1. (((you))) (((Elliott)))

  2. ((((((((((((((((((((you & Elliott)))))))))))))))))))))))

  3. I can only send hugs and prayers. Hope for improvement. hugs and love to you both.

  4. Still sending prayers for you and Elliott, Jess. I’m so sorry you are both going through this. I see the word lymphoma and it feels like a knife in my heart. Justin battled a long time but it still is such a wicked disease. Take care.


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