Abbey's Medical Thread

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Lynx
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Post   » Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:15 pm


A sterile saline solution should work fine.

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Delaine
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Post   » Sat Oct 19, 2013 10:01 pm


I am going to get another opinion on Abbey's eye condition on Tuesday. My friend goes to a different exotic vet in the area so I am going to see what she has to say.

I am really concerned Abbey may have an elongated root. If an X-ray does show this is the problem what should I expect? One of the teeth under that eye does have a small concave area, but that is the only thing the vet could see that was not normal with the teeth.

I looked at the information on elongated roots but there wasn't anything on what could be done. I have read that the offending tooth could be ground down. Is pulling that tooth an option? And if so what will happen to the rest of the teeth once it is gone?

Abbey gets limited pellets, leafy greens and piles of hay. I have added 2 more water bottles to their cage which now total 4. I bring in fresh 2nd cut Timothy hay when it is baled in the fall and also a 1st cut just to give them a little more stem to grind. I have 300 lbs. of hay stored for 2 guinea pigs for the winter and Abbey eats it all day long. I am not sure what more I can do.

How about Vitamin C and tooth problems? Is there any connection between the two?

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Delaine
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Post   » Sat May 17, 2014 6:51 pm


I first noticed Abby's sebaceous cyst when I was holding her for the vet August 30, 2012 so she has had it for almost 2 years.

It has grown over the past two years and I feel it is time to have it removed. It sometimes leaks sebum and Zoe is starting to lick it. I booked her in for surgery June 10th.

This will be my first guinea pig surgery so I know I will need some advice. I have some time to prepare and will read everything on post-op care, etc. I have a very good exotic vet and trust her completely.

My first question is regarding blood work before surgery. Is it necessary? I have heard from other members that is difficult to take blood from a guinea pig.

I usually take both girls when I go to the vet, but I will have to leave Abbey for the whole day so I think it is better to leave Zoe at home. I am about 45 minutes from the vet and I plan to come home after I drop her off. What do other members do when they have to leave their piggy at the vet?

I am already getting a little anxious about this surgery and would appreciate any support and advice.

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Lynx
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Post   » Sat May 17, 2014 10:03 pm


Is your guinea pig in otherwise good health? Since this is not an invasive surgery, you might not need blood work (did your vet suggest it?).

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Delaine
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Post   » Sat May 17, 2014 11:54 pm


Abbey is only 3 years old and in very good health. The quote the vet gave me was for $436.00 which included $95.00 for blood work.

My friend has had surgery done on two of her guinea pigs, one for a spay and another for a growth in the ear. Both were done by Abbey's vet. I left a message for her to call me back to see if blood work was done before the two surgeries.

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Lynx
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Post   » Sun May 18, 2014 9:15 am


It is a good screening to ensure the pig is in good health. I don't know if your vet would be okay with foregoing it but (depending on what your other friend says), maybe?

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Sun May 18, 2014 9:57 am


My Flourish didn't have any blood work done when she had her stone removed.

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Delaine
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Post   » Sun May 18, 2014 12:05 pm


Thanks for the info Lynx and bpatters. I told the receptionist when she called with the quote that I didn't think it was necessary. I will have to wait and see what her vet says.

About fasting. When I thought I had to have Abbey sedated for an ultrasound I was told she would have to fast for 4 hours. She wasn't sedated so it wasn't an issue.

For this surgery I was told no fasting at all and she can eat right up until surgery time. I think my friend had to fast her guinea pigs for a couple of hours.

The recommendations for fasting seem to change and that part is a bit confusing.

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 7:01 am


My vets usually say take pellets away about 12 hours preop. Leave hay in the cage. Put the piggie in a carrier **without** hay for the trip to the vet, and bring a bag of hay (and greens) for postop feeding.

Here's the problem: guinea pigs have a pouch well down in their throats that can collect material and can conceivably cause aspiration. Pinta lost a pig this way. It's very rare but it does happen. Food in the mouth is swabbed out pre-anaesthesia, but no swab will reach this little pouch area.

The flip side of the coin is that guinea pigs need a consistent stream of fiber going through their systems. You do NOT repeat NOT want to fast a guinea pig pre-anaesthesia the way you fast a dog, cat, or human. So the truth is somewhere in the middle.

This -- "I think my friend had to fast her guinea pigs for a couple of hours" -- is in my opinion the safest way to go.

Preop bloodwork is standard for dogs. Guinea pigs don't need it unless there is a strong, standalone reason for it. Any vet that tells me they want to do a standard preop blood workup on a guinea pig is telling me that their practice protocol (probably encouraged, if not set, by their attorneys) comes before the health and safety of my pig. Nope. In that case, we look for another vet for the surgery.

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 11:47 am


Talishan

This information is very helpful and it all makes sense. Thank you.

I have 3 weeks to gather all the information I can and hopefully be totally prepared to take good care of Abbey after her surgery.

I am going to mention the pouch to my vet. I know she has done many surgeries on rabbits and seems to be very knowledgeable about guinea pigs. She is very open to suggestions from her clients and willing to learn from our experiences.

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 12:01 pm


Abbey still has the issue with her eye. It hasn't changed since last September and doesn't bother her.

Her vet feels it is a blocked tear duct. So while she is out for her surgery should I ask her vet to try and clear the tear duct? I am a little concerned about doing this. At our last visit her vet said it can be tricky because the ducts and sinuses are fairly delicate and there is a chance they could rupture during the flushing.

I am inclined to not take a chance. The only time I notice a problem is when she cleans and the eye fills with fluid. It just doesn't drain by the proper channels. So far there is no irritation or issues from the moisture. I have to thank her sister Zoe for that. She licks it and keeps it clean. Also I clean it with sterilized water and a soft cloth if Zoe hasn't dealt with it.

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 12:28 pm


I wouldn't want anything surgically done to a blocked tear duct. They're tiny channels, and I can't imagine how they would unblock one with an instrument.

You might try VERY VERY gently massaging under the eye on a daily basis, and see if that clears it up. Several people have had success with that.

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 6:27 pm


bpatters Thanks for the input. You have confirmed my gut feelings so that is good enough for me. I just wasn't sure if I should miss this opportunity since she was going to be out anyways.

I will give the gentle massage a try, although Abbey's sister Zoe cleans it and does her piggy version of a massage. Abbey will go up to Zoe and stand there with her eye facing Zoe waiting for her to clean it. I keep hoping she will clear the duct.

The biggest worry is moisture accumulating under her eye which could lead to bacterial or fungal infections. So far the area around the eye is healthy.

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Lynx
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Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 10:06 pm


I do believe I've heard of veterinary ophthalmologists performing this sort of surgery. The ducts would indeed be extremely small.

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue May 20, 2014 10:54 pm


I think I will leave the eye for now and concentrate on getting Abbey through the cyst surgery. I am more nervous about the post-op than the actual surgery. The surgery is out of my control once she is sedated but the post-op care is totally up to me and I don't want to blow it.

I chose June 10th because my husband goes on his annual mountain biking holiday with his buddies. I will have the house to myself. I can focus on taking care of my two piggy girls and making sure Abbey gets the care she needs.

Talishan
You can quote me

Post   » Wed May 21, 2014 11:09 am


"I am inclined to not take a chance. The only time I notice a problem is when she cleans and the eye fills with fluid. It just doesn't drain by the proper channels. So far there is no irritation or issues from the moisture. I have to thank her sister Zoe for that. She licks it and keeps it clean. Also I clean it with sterilized water and a soft cloth if Zoe hasn't dealt with it."

Huge ditto; agreed. We have had what seems like a gazillion pigs with this (and often they have been heart pigs as well, FWIW). We have done exactly as you have done. Keep an eye (no pun intended) on the eye itself for any corneal abrasion, if the cagemate gets too vigorous. ;-)

Flushing with sterile saline or the old fashioned plain (nothing added) eye drops helps too.

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Delaine
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Post   » Wed May 21, 2014 11:25 am


I will go over the heart page but Abbey is very active, no cough, hooting or other abnormal noises but it is something to keep in mind.

I didn't realize there are so many pigs with this eye issue. This is why I love this forum, so many experienced guinea pig owners with good sound advice.

I will also make sure Zoe isn't causing any damage with her cleaning. It is usually a few licks to clean up the excess fluid.

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue Jun 10, 2014 5:47 pm


Abbey had her surgery to remove her sebaceous cyst this morning. She is in recovery right now. If all goes well I will pick her up at 5:15 pm. They said she is doing well.

I am more nervous about post-op care and how her sister will react to her than I was about the actual surgery. I will read all the post-op information before I go and pick her up. I will bring home some critical care in case I need it and I will inquire about pain medication.

Anything else I should ask about?

Here is a "before" picture of the cyst. I will post an "after" picture of her incision.

Image

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Delaine
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Post   » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:55 pm


Abbey is home and eating greens, pepper, hay and pellets. She is still in her 1 x 2 C&C cage for now. She did move from her cuddle cup to the hay pile.

She was given the pain medication Torbugesic before and after surgery and a shot of Reglan. I was sent home with three days worth of Metacam already measured in three syringes.

I have seen pee and some poop.

I am concerned with the stitches. The incision was quite large (cut in a Y shape) and they couldn't use the hidden stitches due to the thick skin on her hip.

So now she has several knotted stitches and I am concerned either Abbey or her sister might decide to chew off the knots. I have taken off the rest of the week so I can monitor all day if need be.

Has anyone else had any issues with their pigs removing the stitches?

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Tue Jun 10, 2014 10:57 pm


It looks sore and painful. So glad you had it removed! Let me know if you'd like your pics added permanently to your thread for future readers.

gl/postop.html

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