Saturday, February 12, 2011

Several Hundred Dollars Later...

I took this picture last night.
Layla posed this way by herself, perhaps as a
foreshadowing of today's expenses ($805!!!)..

Today was our big appointment at Garden State Veterinary Specialists with an Internal Medicine vet.

Thankfully, the process was a bit less painful than I had anticipated.  The hospital was empty when we arrived, so I didn't have to see any sick animals or distraught owners like I did last time.  I waited in the car until about 5 minutes before our appointment time, then whisked Layla inside.  We were only in the waiting room for about an additional 5 minutes.

The vet was very nice.. coincidentally, he was the vet who treated Layla the last time we took her out there, in 2006.  He seemed to have some recollection of her case (and I don't know if he was making it up, but he said he remembered my mom).

The consultation and testing probably took less than 45 minutes altogether.  They did an ultrasound and bloodwork.  The ultrasound came back clear; he said that all of her abdominal organs look good, but her colon was filled with tons of stool and gas.

He agreed with me that Layla has some sort of malabsorption problem.  He repeatedly said it could be due to a pancreatic deficiency.  The bloodwork will determine whether that is the case or not.  It would not be hard to manage, according to him.

If the bloodwork shows that her pancreas is fine, we're going to have to take the next step and think about endoscopy/biopsy of her intestine.  This is kind of scary, as I said that I really didn't want to put Layla under anesthesia.  He said that there was very little risk.. the only thing he would recommend before anesthesia is a chest X-Ray, because she does have what he called a "loud" heart murmur.  (I knew she had a heart murmur, but did/do not know the severity of it.) I guess we'll cross that bridge if/when we get there.

Biopsy of the intestine would search for possible inflammatory bowel disease or intestinal lymphoma.  He said that both of these can be managed well.. that this type of lymphoma in cats is not "terrible" the way it is in people.

So, we don't have an answer right now, because everything is contingent upon the results of the bloodwork, which we will have within the week.  Over all, I think the news is pretty good, because he doesn't seem to think that she has anything that can't be treated or managed.  I'm glad that the ultrasound was good.. it's comforting to know she's not riddled with masses or anything like that.  It's frustrating to still not have a diagnosis, though, especially when it's obvious that Layla is not getting the nutrients that she needs.

Thank you so much for your continued thoughts for my little girl.  She sure is happy to be home (and not so happy to be sporting a new bald spot on her belly!).

26 comments:

giantspeckledchihuahua February 12, 2011 at 9:41 PM  

Thanks for the up date! i was wondering how Layla (and you) were holding up!

Hopefully you'll have an answer soon and Layla can live healthily ever after!

Vicky February 12, 2011 at 9:57 PM  

I know waiting can be difficult. Paws crossed that you find answers soon.

♥♥♥ The OP Pack ♥♥♥ February 12, 2011 at 9:57 PM  

Sounds like a very logical methodology to finding an answer. We do hope that the result IS something very manageable. You are doing all that you can for Layla.

Woos ~ Phantom, Thunder, and Ciara

Sue February 12, 2011 at 10:21 PM  

So far it sounds good. He seems to think it may be treatable and that's always good. Keep us posted, we're keeping our paws crossed for her.

The Teacher's Pets February 12, 2011 at 10:24 PM  

I am sorry to have gotten so out of sync with what was happening with Layla and I am going to do my best to stay updated from now on! How awful that you had such a high vet bill! Be thankful you could pay it b/c I for one could not (at least not all at once)! I am glad that Layla's issues can be taken care of and that you had some concrete answers for your little girl! I find it amazing that cats (and other pets) can have the same or nearly the same issues as humans do and sometimes I wonder if the vets are better at identifying their symptoms than m.d.'s!

Lorenza February 12, 2011 at 10:37 PM  

Glad to know everything went well at the appointment and I hope the results of the bloodwork give you an answer so whatever is affecting Layla can be treated in the right way!
Take care
Kisses and hugs
Lorenza

Sam February 12, 2011 at 10:38 PM  

Oh, we didn't pay it all at once! I wound up using a good chunk of holiday gift money, and the rest is on the credit card for now.. I definitely am thankful that she can get the treatment she needs.

Muttsandaklutz February 12, 2011 at 10:43 PM  

Oh jeez -- so sorry that you guys are going through this, but glad that nothing too serious turned up in the ultrasound. Walter had an ultrasound just a few weeks ago, so he asked me to pass on the message to Layla that her fur will in fact grow back :)

Stella February 12, 2011 at 11:00 PM  

You are most lucky to have such a prestigious animal hospital near you. I would have to go 100 miles to reach something like this.

All good wishes to Layla and her bare belly. We hope for the very best outcome to you and your girl!

Cheers and hugs,

Jo and Stella

Khyra And Sometimes Her Mom February 12, 2011 at 11:14 PM  

We are glad to see the experience was far from what you anticipated -

Paws crossed for good news pointing to a simpler fix -

Kathy February 12, 2011 at 11:40 PM  

sounds like so far so good, glad it was not too terribly traumatic, and you had a vet that you were familiar with...we will continue to keep our fingers and paws crossed!!!

Priscilla February 13, 2011 at 1:01 AM  

So sorry to hear what Layla had to go through but we are happy that everything sounds good. It's always hard to have something unknown and you've to wait for the report. Layla will be in our thoughts and our paws are crossed tightly for her.

ForPetsSake February 13, 2011 at 1:18 AM  

I'm glad to hear the prognosis is positive. Please keep us updated.

Sara February 13, 2011 at 6:42 AM  

I'm glad the whole experience was somewhat positive.

Poor Layla, I hope they can find out what's wrong soon so treatment can begin.

Hang in there.

Ricky the Sheltie February 13, 2011 at 7:28 AM  

Glad you got basically good news and didn't have too traumatic a time at the vets. All you can do now is wait and see..take care and know that we are thinking about you guys!

Kirby, CGC February 13, 2011 at 8:42 AM  

I am so glad you are on your way to getting answers for Layla, waiting for an answer is so hard, but your specialist sounds good. Keeping our fingers and paws crossed for good results!

Kirby's mom

tula February 13, 2011 at 10:07 AM  

oh Layla, can't woo just tell the vet what's wrong?! it'd make things soo furry much easier... (nice try with the photo:)

sounds like somewhat good news- that's nothing untreatable..

kissies,
tula

Lavi February 13, 2011 at 12:54 PM  

Hoping for the best for Layla. Keep us updated on her condition. It's good to know the vet thinks it won't be serious in any case.

andrea February 13, 2011 at 3:22 PM  

so glad it went realtively well - will continue sending good thoughts her and your way!

Diana February 13, 2011 at 7:30 PM  

Im glad the appt. was painless for you. Ouch for the check book though. Keeping our fingers crossed that the the blood work looks good.

KB February 13, 2011 at 8:18 PM  

I'm glad that the appt wasn't traumatic for you. I know how that is.

It sounds like you've got a really good vet on the case, and they'll figure it out. It's hard to be patient, I know... but I think that you got the best possible news given all that Layla has been through!

Paws will stay crossed here for her.

River February 13, 2011 at 10:23 PM  

That was a smart way to visit the vet. My mom thinks she might do that too. I hope you get some good news.

love & wags,
River

Scout 'n Freyja February 14, 2011 at 2:24 AM  

Momma says those green papers are 'easy come - easy go'. Don't know what that means but she has a pained look on her face when she says it.

Sending good thoughts for the furry one.

Roxanne @ Champion of My Heart February 14, 2011 at 11:17 AM  

Well, other than the expense and continued worry, it sounds like it went pretty well. Let's hope it's just some body chemistry issues that can be easily (and inexpensively managed). Hugs to you both.

Gus, Louie and Callie February 14, 2011 at 5:25 PM  

Oh we sure hope you figure out what is going on..
Good luck
Happy Valentines Day..

Big Sloppy Kisses
Gus, Louie and Callie

mayziegal February 14, 2011 at 6:49 PM  

Layla sure is lucky to have such a good momma. I know they'll find out what's wrong and it won't be too bad and they'll fix her right up. Oh, and I'm awfully glad you didn't have to be traumatized by the waiting room either. I'm very much glad it went good. But I'm still keeping my paws crossed tight for her.

Wiggles & Wags,
mayzie

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