Posted 01 August 2012 - 01:27 PM
Posted 01 August 2012 - 01:59 PM
She is a Maltese, around the age of 3 or 4 when diagnosed. Can't be sure of her age as she was a rescue. I made the decision post surgery to keep her on the Hills l/d, just to be on the safe side and while the shunt was closing and have never taken her off it. She gets a hand full of dry for breakfast and then half a tin of the wet at dinner time. I have 2 other dogs who think that the l/d dry is the best thing ever and will try to steal it from her if she drops a piece, so it must be OK. At diagnosis she was 3.8 kilos and is now 6.8 kilo. Ben said that I could wean her off the l/d but since she likes it and as I was nervous about doing so, I didn't. I do give her "normal" treats.
I'm trying to remember how long she was in hospital for. For the initial diagnosis, she was in for 2 days. They put a radioactive dye in her system and monitored that to watch the shunt. She then came home for a couple of weeks with the medications that you have already posted about, and the l/d, to build up her strength for surgery. I think she was in ICU for one day post surgery, then a normal ward for about 2 days or maybe 3 - I can't exactly remember. The first 24 hours are the worst, incase she rejected the band they put on the blood vessel.
The worst part was prior to surgery, watching her be such a sick little girl, and hoping that she'd make it through to surgery date. The recovery post surgery was a breeze compared to prior.
I wouldn't hesitate to do it again faced with the same diagnosis.
Posted 01 August 2012 - 04:47 PM
Posted 04 August 2012 - 12:31 PM
I rang the Surgeon yesterday and I am to take her down to Sydney Uni on the 13th to have the CT scan on Tuesday morning and if it is an external shunt she will be operated on that afternoon. The Dr wanted her to be stable and in tip top condition for about a month but it is just not happening. Yesterday was the first day for a week that she hasn't vomited. At the moment she is bright in herself and I am just hoping she stays that way for the next week. I am so happy I have had these positive replies. I felt as if we were the only ones going through this. Was it a long recovery for your dog? Do they expect the operation to have cured her/him?
Posted 04 August 2012 - 01:47 PM
Intrahepatic shunts are less common in the smaller dogs it depends on the type of shunt but unless there are multiple shunts it shouldn't regrow after it has been closed down, it's generally only if there are other abnormal areas in there that things get more complicated.
The recovery was very good it helped that he was under a year old that improves prognosis, he was on siezure watch for 3 days following the surgery (post op seizures are a very dangerous complication for this surgery) so I wasn't allowed to see him during that time but it was a very short recovery time he was bouncing around happy and healthy even with staples running from between his front legs to between his back legs. He was kept on the special diet for a couple of months after to prevent overworking his liver, he never showed any more symptoms after that. He had a blood biochemistry test done (same as the diagnosis bile acid test) after a few months and this came back perfectly normal no sign of liver dysfunction and he was put on a normal diet. He was 10 months old when he had the surgery and he's 6 years old now and he's been a perfectly dog ever since
I was lucky, there were no dangerous complications, the shunt appears to have caused no further problem and therefore hasn't required further surgery, I was lucky to have an excellent surgeon in the country (Geraldine Hunt) unfortunately she's not at University of Sydney anymore but I'm sure they have great vets there.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 04:51 PM
Posted 04 August 2012 - 06:47 PM
Posted 14 August 2012 - 07:33 PM
Milly had her shunt operation today. She wasn't stabalising so they decided it was better sooner rather than later to operate. She had the CT scan with dye this morning and then went straight to surgery. She has a very large shunt and they don't know if they will be able to completely close it. She may have more surgery later. The Surgeon will ring me tomorrow and if she is okay she will come home on Thursday.
I want to thank all of you who posted it really made me feel more confident and feel encouraged to go for the surgery.