Chronos is in Serious Conditon

Posted By: Xfilefan

Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 02/28/07 10:57 PM

For any who attended either of the last 2 SGGAs...Chronos is the little guy who so graciously let me repeatedly put the E-collar on him half a dozen times or so in the SM table demos both years. smile

Now he's in trouble, but we think it's treatable.

I had him out Sunday, and he seemed fine. Last night, he came out a little before I left for work, and threw up. Then he peed, and it was the most neon yellow I can describe-think the gremlins in the posts yellow. frown

I had weighed him only a few weeks ago at 145 grams (down from 154)...BUT, we'd cut treats down for a few months, so that wasn't out of line. I stuck him on the scale last night and he was only 122 grams. Took him into brighter light, and could then see that not only was his pee extremely yellow, so were his hands, feet, nose, and ears. 10 pm. Okay..jaundice means the liver is involved-due to what was the question. So we gave him some metaclopramide (anti nausea), and I'd take him to my regular vet in the morning.

Got off work this morning, and took him straight from work in Park City to my vet in Salt Lake...who wasn't in today. shakehead They referred me to one in Centerville they send to when Dr. Harris is out (and I was very impressed by him)...and tacked on another almost 100 miles to an already nearly 100 mile drive. But Chronos needed to be seen TODAY, so off we go.

We got there, and they took us in, got Chronos' information, history, weight, and didn't have to wait long for the vet. (I'll be adding another option to the database for UT people). He really looked yellow under the exam room lights. frown Vet did physical exam, and got a urine sample-bright yellow-that they went and ran a urinalysis on. Extremely high amounts of bilirubin (indicating liver dysfunction). Next step was a blood panel-we had to find out what was going on on the inside. Vet put him under with Isofluorin....and he promptly vomited. They spent at least 10 minutes clearing it out of his mouth with swabs so he didn't breathe in any. They took blood from the vena cava in the chest (forgive me if that isn't spelled right-I'm pretty tired by now), I knew it could be done, but hadn't even seen it attempted before-that was interesting. He woke up, and instead of chewing on the towel, he tried to chew on his back foot as he came out of it. So I had to hold him wrapped in the towel until he woke up enough to stop that. I talked with the receptionist a bit while they were running the panel-took about half an hour or so.

First, I'm going to post the results. Items marked with * are elevated, marked with ** are dramatically elevated:

ALB 2.8 g/dl
*ALKP 496 U/L (liver enzyme)
*ALT 307 U/L (liver enzyme)
AMYL 467 U/L
BUN 13 mg/dl
Ca 7.9 mg/dl
CHOL 156 mg/dl
CREA 0.5 mg/dl
GLU 241 mg/dl
PHOS 5.3 mg/dl
** TBIL 18.8 mg/dl (bilirubin)

*NEUT 26% (white blood cells)-slightly elevated
**LYMPH 60% (dramatically elevated lymphocytes)
MONO 11%
EOS 2%
Base 1%


URO --
GLU --
Ket --
**BILI ++++
Prot 30
Sp Gr. 1.034

Now I'm going to attempt to re-explain this so it makes sense. crazy

It is NOT Primary liver disease (what our Gim died of), because of the fact that the liver enzymes, though elevated, aren't 'dramatically elevated'

A small part of the liver is involved, including the bile duct (hence the bilirubin secretion)

Possibilities presented based on his history, symptoms, and test results:
Hephatic Lipidosis (sp?)
Bile stone, sludge
Iron storage disease (remote)
some blockage or dysfunction of the bile duct

The vet feels Hephatic Lipidosis is most likely (and I'll get to explaining what that is), though cancer and stones aren't ruled out.

This means he isn't processing fats correctly, and they are storing themselves in the liver, forming deposits and compromising function.

He starts the following meds today:
Milk Thistle (to improve liver function)
Metoclopramide (to keep him from throwing up what he tries to eat)
There are 2 others we can add if results are limited with this.

Dietary changes: no meats, limit fats, limit iron

This means no BML, because it has meat (chicken), egg, iron fortified baby cereal

We are going with Boost as a staple (it is a little lower in fat than Ensure-vet agrees), and along with eliminating green veggies, and NO more MEALIES, I have to go look up the rest of the fruit/veggie values. He can have an occasional little canned cricket, tho.

I am also to syringe feed him a few times a day to make sure he's getting enough calories-we need to see his weight go UP.

Now, vet wants to do a needle biopsy with ultrasound. That will look for things like cancer, stones, etc, and confirm (closer) the diagnosis with a glider safe sized sample of the liver). With almost $700 in vet bills between Feb 7 and 28th (today's was $273.77), I couldn't do it today. I'm going to have to try and scrape that together, and it will be an additional $300 (give or take)since vets got all but a couple tanks of gas worth of my paychecks this month. So for now, we're treating for what the vet thinks is most likely, and will go from there. My apologies for not managing to remember everything the vet said-a lot of it was rather detailed, and I think I'm too tired. We got out of the vets at noon (after 3 hours-the man is VERY thorough, and very gentle with the gliders), picked up his new staple food, dropped the blood results off at Harris' office, picked up a few extra syringes (and I gave him his anti nausea meds and a drink) and then home by 2:30 pm. (I left work with him about 7:20 this morning. ohwell

Know that if anything gets worse...we WILL be heading back to the vet no question, and immediate, and I just hope I can find a way to get what he needs for the testing.

I hope my little yellow guy starts to improve! As the vet said, this is very serious, and we could lose him (though I really hope not, as he has a chance this can be treated). He is such a sweet little guy. Keep him in your thoughts.

Edit: Oh, and the reason the vet says it's not primary liver disease (meaning it's dying and too badly damaged to treat-terminal) is because he'd expect to see the liver enzymes much more elevated along with the other items, and they aren't.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 02/28/07 11:01 PM

Oh, and the vet who saw him today is:

Parrish Creek Veterinary Clinic
Douglas W Folland, DVM
86 North 70 West
Centerville, UT 84014
(801) 298-2014

Office hours: 8am to 6pm Monday thru Friday w/emergency referral message on off hours.

They also will offer financing thru CareCredit for bills totalling $300 or more (an option I may need to ask the details on).

Oh, and Gina (Monster)...I'm having no luck getting through to your phone today...don't know why. I have tried twice. crazy
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 02/28/07 11:21 PM

This is probably not very helpful, but watch him for more body chewing. If the bilirubin levels get too high his skin will feel itchy and he may get sores. He'll chew on himself because he feels like he itches and can actually cause a lot of damage without really meaning to. frown

I'm soo sorry to hear about him, hopefully he'll feel better soon.
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/02/07 06:56 AM

Jen, Sorry Chronos is ill. One small comment to add your info about the white count differential, which was:

Neutrophils 26%
Lymphocytes 60%
Monocytes 11%
EOS 2%
Baso 1%

One can report absolute counts, which is a report of the actual numbers of each kind of cell (best because it tells true elevations or decreased production)), or the percentage of each kind of cell. Your numbers are percentages, a common way to array the data.

Eosinoplins and basophils are usually in small %, and 0-2% is a common range. Monocytes are often in the 5-12% range, and nothing there is surprising. They all add up to 100%, so what is left is going to be neutrophils (often predominant in new infections and bacterial infections) or lymphocytes (often predominant in certain viral infections or normally by default if nothing else is present in elevated amounts). Since Monos, Eos and Basos are in low count, the majority of cells will be neutophils or lymphocytes. No infection and thus no elevation in neutrophils will make a lymphocyte % LOOK high. When there is an infection and neutrophils are increased, lymphocytes LOOK low in %.

The advantage of absolute counts is that one knows whether both lines are high, or both low, which might not be apparent in % reporting. 26% Neutrophils and 60% lymphocytes are both totally normal percentages to see reported. And they can't both be high, as the two added together are 100%(total)-14%(subtracting Eos+Baso+Monos)= 86% remaining.

Only 26% neutrophils is reassuring from an infection standpoint, which can be one reason for poor liver function.

Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/02/07 01:33 PM

Thank you schlep. smile I'm more versed in the first set of values than the second (and didn't even reaized they added to 100%!), and not very good in the first one yet. I was just relaying what the vet said at the visit. He didn't think he had an infection either (or not a bad one). Note that his anal glands did have some green secretion at the visit.

First, Update: Chronos' pee isn't Quite as yellow (or wasn't last night at meds time)-not so neon, but still way yellower than it should be, and so is he.

His weight is UP 5 grams from night before last!! He weighed in at 128 grams after meds! smile

Working Theory (which could be WAY off base, but I'm going to discuss with the vet):

We've been studying the causes of his condition in mammals and people. One jumped out (one of the more common ones I'll put down later).

1. On the 7th, Clotho...Chronos' cagemate, went to the vet with an infection of some kind that had her vomiting. Chronos showed no signs of illness at that time (or until the night before he went to the vet), but did show a 9 gram loss of weight (which COULD have been attributed to having cut snacks down so much the prior few months)-weight was 145 grams, down from 154 he'd sustained for over a year and a half. In total he lost 32 grams in around 3-4 weeks.
2. Clotho treated for her infection, and is doing fine. Chronos showed no problems.
3. The night we found out he was sick, was because he was vomiting (same as Clotho had been). And we took him into bright light when we also noticed the extremely yellow pee in the tray, and saw he was jaundiced, and weighed him.
4. One of the main causes of this problem in cats and people (so far) is fasting or starvation. Basically, lack of food and the body starts to not only consume it's own fat stores, it begins to store them in the liver. Mahatma Ghandi (known for fasting as a non-violent protest) died of liver condition that was a direct result. Hostages and prisoners have died from it as well when starved.
5. Question: Could Chronos have also been sick...but hid it better? Instead of throwing up earlier...did he simply eat less and less? Thus causing the body to begin consuming it's fat stores, and storing it in the liver?
Is it possible his body was able to fight off the infection (whatever Clotho had)...but at the cost of liver complications? Or does he still have a minor infection in addition to those dratted scent glands, and the antibiotic is now helping to clear it?

Anyway, just thought I'd put my thinking down-just seems like an awful big coincidence. Wouldn't have occurred to me if Clotho hadn't just been sick also (for the first time in her life-she's normally extremely healthy). Once I get to discuss this with the vet, I'll let everyone know what she says, and since Chronos will be having daily weigh-ins now, I'll post those as I can.

Edit: Also tried to look up those cell values in the Merk Vet manual online for gliders...and wouldn't you know, they had numbers and not percentages also, so it didn't help me much, lol. ohwell
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/05/07 08:50 AM

Chronos' skin yellow has gone down a bit, and he's got some of his pink back. His urine is still much yellower than it should be, although not QUITE as bad as vet day, nowhere near normal, and he's not gotten less yellow urine wise since day 2. He's a little less active than normal, but not severely, hanging in there, and taking his meds. I'll be taking him in Friday to Dr. Harris for a recheck, unless he gets worse before then-but I'd like her opinion. I may ask if I can make payments if she's willing to do the ultrasound and biopsy-the course we're on is uncertain and I'd like to be more certain as to what's going on. He's maintaining at 128 grams, but at least hasn't lost any more.

Also, This was the glider that jumped around and visited just about everyone on the 2nd floor balcony at the 2005 SGGA in Fayetteville, AK-I'd had him a week. There is NO ONE this glider isn't sweet with. frown

Because so many gliders have died and been necropsied with liver problems, I think his case is important. It may help gliders in the future, even though it hurts to post so minimal progress. His cagemate was in heat the last couple days, and he hid in the hammock-I think he didn't feel good enough to bring her her monkeys. I feel so bad for the little guy!
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/07/07 06:58 AM

Chronos weighed in at a 2-3 gram loss tonight. frown He weighed in at 125/6 grams.

Although his skin is less yellow, it's not gone, but his pee is still very yellow. He hasn't thrown up or tried to since he's been to the vet.

He's refusing to eat much, tho. won't touch the Boost or Ensure-but drinking a lot of gliderade, and a few veggies. He's barely touching the fruits. So today, the Boost started to go down the hard way (by syringe)... .5 CC twice a day of Boost, and the same of Yogurt (nonfat with natural sugar-THAT wasn't easy to find!), and he's loving his canned crickets (NOTE: Freeze dried crickets are about 8% fat, while the canned ones are .5%...that is a BIG difference!)

He still seems active and bright eyed, just without much of an appetite, and that's important right now. So if it has to go down the hard way, then it will. He's so sweet natured, though, he still wants attention from his people afterward. smile In any case, that's where we stand at the moment.
Posted By: the gliders angel

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/07/07 07:15 AM

im glad hes doing better i would give him all the bugs he wants give him the whole can if he wants them. i would not give too much yogurt. try egg chicken apple melon even try some wombarroo high protein sprinkled on his food.
Posted By: BeckiT

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/07/07 03:35 PM

Originally Posted By: the gliders angel
im glad hes doing better i would give him all the bugs he wants give him the whole can if he wants them. i would not give too much yogurt. try egg chicken apple melon even try some wombarroo high protein sprinkled on his food.

I'm sure she'd love to be able to give him as many bugs as he'd eat, but he's on a specilized diet right now with no meats, limited fats, limited iron (thus eliminating his normal diet of BML..)

Continured prayers headed to Chronos Jen and hug2 s to you too!
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/09/07 09:30 AM

SugarBlossoms, he used to be 154. Ten days ago he weighed 122 grams. frown Night before last he was 126. I did tonights weight twice to make sure I was seeing right....and would like vet to confirm my scale didn't get posessed or something! He's still sick, yellow skin and pee (jaundice), but if he gained that much, it's a REALLY good thing!
Posted By: SugarBlossoms

Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/09/07 09:43 AM

I just threw off an email to Aussieland to see if they can tell us something, anything at this point.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/09/07 10:00 AM

I appreciate that. hug2 Since he's a rescue, I have no history, and he has genetic issues as well (missing toes/fingers). About all I can say was he was attacked by other males in a colony situation before I got him (the suspected cause of his anal gland abscesses), and will be approximately 4 years old in July, other than what's in this thread. crazy
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/10/07 08:27 AM

Don't worry, lol. My computer access can be sporadic, but I'll get here eventually.

Chronos' weight HAS gone up-he weighed 134 on the vet's scale!! dance (He may not LIKE the Boost going down the hard way twice a day-but it's working! grin )

She agrees he may have been sick along with Clotho, and that caused him to stop eating, thus triggering this. There is nothing in the glider literature in this country on this condition (and it's unlikely a wild glider with this would live long) so he's basically pioneering a new area. (Who knows-maybe one of these vets will write a paper on him someday that will help other gliders?) She did look up several species, and mentioned she knows that a cat that goes completely without food for 72 hours will get this, and hedgehogs do also, along with a number of other species. Dogs aren't as prone, and take much, much more severe conditions/starvation over a lot longer periods. We also agree it most likely was from something they ate (though no idea what).

He'll be on the antibiotics and tummy meds for a total of 21 days-and we'll look at doing a biopsy then. He'll be on the milk thistle the rest of his life-but the key is that he WILL have a LIFE.

His pee wasn't nearly as yellow today, though the bilirubin count in the urine was still extremely high. He was very yellow inside his ears-which is common with this for having been asleep just before his exam. His pee tends to be a bit yellower in the evenings after not being up or drinking much during the day (which is why we're pushing fluids daytime), and less yellow in the mornings after being active and eating/drinking at night. His activity level was up. thumb

He really hasn't been all that dehydrated-not even at first and the vet didn't think a subq necessary, though he was a little drier than he should have been. His skin went down slower than normal, but it did go down-and still will albeit not quite as quickly as I'd like, and he's peeing pretty normal quantities-it's the color that tends to be alarming. We know the milk thistle is helping, because in the mornings now, his pee is almost clear (after a nap, he gets some yellow back)...and by their 'morning' at night, the color isn't something you can miss, although it's nowhere near the neon that stood out like a beacon on the white towels the first couple of days.

At least they took pity on my pocketbook, lol-2 gliders, meds, and a urinalysis - $84.00.

His next visit will be after the antibiotics are finished, so I'll update when that gets here, and continue from there, except for progress reports.

And THANK YOU thanks to everyone who has been so supportive. Chronos is a true rescue (and one of the few that has the sweetest disposition of any glider I've ever met, despite the hardships, that's seemingly unshakable).

I also learned that if ANY of my gliders has an undiagnosed infection in the future, symptoms or no, EVERY glider in that cage gets treated. If I'd followed my instinct and done that (they didnt' think it likely he had it and recommended to not treat when I asked at Clotho's visit if we should go ahead and treat him as well) he might not be here now. tounge My concern had been for the amounts of antibiotics he'd had for his anal abscesses previously, and I went along with it.

He also had more of an appetite tonight-and ran off with an entire sugar snap pea, lol-I got a pic of him with it, and will upload and post when I get home from work.
Posted By: the gliders angel

Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/10/07 08:41 AM

great news keep giving him snap peas also good is snow peas they use them alot in australia. try an almond too. its high in vit e.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/10/07 09:01 AM

Unfortunately-he can't have nuts. They're high in fat, and that's the one thing we have to avoid like the plague. Since he liked the pea so much tho-we let him have another one (they're almost as big as him!) lol smile

Since we've decided iron isn't an issue, he can have his peas now, and boy is he happy about that!
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/12/07 08:00 AM

Gina, yes she agrees with the first vet's diagnosis. His liver is definitely involved and that's what will take his life if it doesn't improve significantly. The needle biopsy/ultrasound will give some more concrete answers when we do that. His next appointment will be after the 21 days, to that's about 10-12 days from now.

He's still very yellow. I'll be getting an updated weight on him in the morning, and wanted another pic of him on a white towel to post along with the sugar pea, so that'll be in the am after work, and before I take my son for his haircut. He's also very tired of all the stuff getting shoved down his throat. The yellow really shows up against white, and I wanted a pic to show everyone what he looks like with the jaundice. I've seen worse with gliders in complete liver failure though, which is why I have some hope, provided his testing doesn't come up with cancer or something-for that, there would be nothing to be done other than keep him comfortable until his quality of life deteriorated too far, or he was in uncontrollable pain.

Gimli had primary liver failure from damage caused by a former owner-it was too badly damaged to heal. His was a slow decline as the liver failed over time, and until his last day of life (on a VERY radical diet), he was happy and active. Once his liver failed entirely though, that was it. Chronos' condition is different, though, and affecting him in different ways than what Gimli had, and Gim's diet would likely kill Chronos posthaste, as it was filled with all the things Chronos can't have. Gim's liver enzymes were through the roof, but no bilirubin in the fact Gim's urine was like water...very, very, clear. Chronos' enzymes aren't nearly as high, but his pee is extremely yellow. Gim's jaundice wasn't as pronounced until his last couple months, as Chronos' already is. So we're learning as we go, just as we did with Gimli. The good thing, is that I'll remember and hopefully the knowledge will help someone else's baby sometime.

Anyway, pics in the morning.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/12/07 03:49 PM

Here's the pics I promised. He weighed in at 136 (small gain, but still a gain!) this morning! laugh He wouldn't let me get a good angle for his jaundice, don't know if you can see it on top of his nose...I can, but I'm used to him, too. It shows up best next to the white fur by his ears on the inside, but I'll have to have someone hold him for that.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/15/07 05:10 PM

I made an attempt to get some better pics of the jaundice this morning. Debating whether to schedule his tests for this Friday, or next Wednesday, since it really isn't getting better (and he threw up a little yesterday-so I kept an eye on him all day-Cole mistakenly put BML in, and he ate it, and that's what came back up frown ) First time he's vomited since the vet visit when we took it away.

One pic shows the extreme yellow of his pee, another I managed a shot of the inside of his ear. I also took a pic of the monkeys he took Clotho last night, lol. You can see it in that as well, but the amount of color in the pic sort of doesn't make it stand out that well-and Clotho is camera shy.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/22/07 02:32 PM

Thank you for all your prayers. heart

Chronos' condition was much worse than we thought. We didn't do the needle biopsy, the problems showed up on the ultrasound, and he went into a last ditch effort to save him with surgery.

The vet couldn't believe that he was still with us, once we got an idea what was going on in there, or that he wasn't acting much, much sicker. He was at the end of the road, and nothing we could have done would have stopped it had we done the ultrasound before. My only regret is it might have made his last few weeks med free and full of the foods he loved, IF we'd been able to catch it then...his symptoms (or the physical presentation of them) were much worse yesterday.

As it turns out, the ultrasound revealed a gall bladder the size of that of a 10 POUND CAT. It was completely blocked off, and none of the bile could drain. A glider's gall bladder SHOULD be the size of a BB. His was the size of a grape. frown It wasn't huge like that at his last exam. His jaundice was the early symptom of the blockage. In addition, his liver was diseased..cirrotic and covered with nodules-but for some reason, still functioning to some degree. But no fat deposits. The vet had me feel the gall bladder, which could actually be seen once the hair was shaved as a lump just under his ribs if you looked in the right place. It was about to burst. There was also a large pocket of free fluid around the gall bladder in his abdomen.

None of the choices were appealing. We could put him down to stop the agony when it burst, flooding his system with toxins and killing him in minutes. Or attempt to remove the blockage that's suspected to be a stone.

I opted to try surgery. Just as a caution-the cost was $847.00.

I will post his surgical pics separately, from anesthesia through ultrasound through surgery.

They allowed me in the OR, in mask, to photograph this. And I was able to talk at Chronos throughout everything-that means a lot.

The true extent of the damage was evident much more in reality than on the ultrasound. The blockage couldn't be found. There WAS no healthy liver at all, but the vet was encouraged because he's been so strong throughout all this, that it might be functioning well enough to remove the gall bladder and give him a chance. They worked quickly to clamp off all the little blood vessels to take it out, and put him back together, and took a little sample of the liver that was nothing but nodules to send with it to test at the lab. Then did inside and outside stitches, and brought him out of it. Gave shot of pain meds. (I took home a week's supply of them)

He woke up okay at 2:30 pm. I gave him a drink, had him in an ecollar, and kept petting and talking to him while we settled up the costs. I put him in a box on a pillow next to me in the car for the trip home. Clotho was in the pouch nearby-I was going to let them visit when we got home.

At 3:30 we had made it to the top of the mountain (still about 20 miles from home) and he wasn't doing well. I pulled into a parking lot, and called the husband, who came over from work. I took his collar off, and just held him next to me. His breathing was alternating between slow and shallow, and he was very still. He was also much more yellow. There were just too many toxins in his system. He held onto my fingers.

In his last 5 minutes (husband was there by then) he would arch his back and crab-I'm so sorry it hurt and there wasn't anything we could do but hold him and tell him we loved him. He did that 3 times, then simply slipped away. I let Clotho say goodbye right there, wrapped him up, and put him back on the pillow to go home. cry

This morning I have to call and let the vet know.

And every glider in the house got cheesecake filling and hugs last night.

I'l make another thread for his story, but maybe his last illness will help another.

His lab results will be back in 1 WEEK. I'll ask for this thread to be opened once more then, to post the results. For now, vet doesn't think aflatoxin-he said it normally doesn't present like this, but the labs will confirm or deny. Cancer wasn't likely either, he feels the lab will find a stone in there. Again, the labs will tell. He said an infection in there, or exposure to a toxin when young could have done what he saw to the liver. That we may never know, or if it was part of the other genetic issues he had on the outside. Regardless, I'll update with what else we find out when we know.

Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 03/22/07 02:47 PM

One other little thing that belongs with this thread and not the other.

The vet said we couldn't even have attempted this, if not for all the weight he'd gained from the Boost force-feedings (.5 cc twice a day). Once he saw what was in there, he was amazed he'd manage to gain any at all. He weighed in at 138 grams at the beginning of the visit (up from 122 3 weeks ago).

The last couple days, Chronos had lost most interest in doing much but sleeping, bringing his Clotho her monkeys, and being on people. Complete refusal to eat-so that Boost and Gliderade was about it.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:01 PM

Here is Chronos' last surgery. The vet and his staff were nice enough to put me in a mask and let me photograph everything yesterday so I could bring it to the Glider community. Pictures are numbered sequentially in proper order, beginning to end (just in case I manage to get any out of order, you'll know how they should go).

Please, out of respect for a very special little guy, don't post until all pics are up. There are 23 total-at 3 per post, that is 8 posts. I'll get them up as quick as I can.

The first three will be with this one, showing the anesthesia and prep for the ultrasound and what was originally to be a needle biopsy of the liver that became a surgery to try and save him.

Here is the story of his last illness:

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:05 PM

Next 3 (and looks like they're going to load as they wish, since I've now attached them twice in reverse order, and they're still backward - just remember they are numbered in order)

Ultrasound prep, and beginning of procedure.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:07 PM

Next 3

Two shots of the ultrasound. The large, dark area is free fluid in his abdomen.
Pic 3 is prepping for surgery.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:10 PM

10, 11, 12

10 Sterilizing the surgical site with Betadine

11 Adding the sterile sheet/anesthesia mask

12 Making an opening in the plastic

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:11 PM

13, 14, 15

Opening both layers of tissue for access to the abdomen.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:14 PM

16, 17, 18

16 The diseased gall bladder

17 clamping off blood vessels to remove the gall bladder

18 Gall bladder out and ready to be put in container to go to the lab

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:17 PM

19, 20, 21

19 Sample of liver removed for biopsy, all nodules. The entire liver looked like this to a greater or lesser degree.

20. Stitching up the inside tissue layer

21. Stitching up the skin.

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Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 03:21 PM

Last 2.

22. Post surgery about to be moved to recovery oxygen and heat. He did wake up well-his little body just had had enough. No more pics until after we lost him.

23. His final pic shortly after death, when I could get it together enough to take it.

The vet did all he could to try and give Chronos a chance. It was a bad situation, and he couldn't have done more. All my thanks to Parrish Creek Veterinary for their hard work and dedication...and making it possible for us to say Goodbye to this precious soul.

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Posted By: USMom

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/22/07 11:23 PM

Jen, That is exactly the same thing that Tucker went through. He held on for about 2 days after the surgery. That was the most heartbreaking thing, those two days. I wonder if maybe we should be leaving the gall bladder in? I don't know. They were pulling 5-7 cc's of fluid a day out of Tuck's belly, for 10 days before we did the surgery. His liver and gall bladder were both diseased, and the official diagnosis from the necropsy was that he died from aflotoxin poisoning. I don't know.
I am very sorry you guys had to go through this. It is so hard.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/23/07 12:30 AM

It was a last ditch decision made mid surgery-and I knew his chances went down dramatically at that point. No, we probably shouldn't. It was that, or not let him wake up at all (and THAT choice will torture me). Gliders don't do well with abdominal surgery. Perhaps if we can start catching it earlier the outcome might be better. Maybe an ultrasound should be recommended as part of an annual well check...I don't know. Undergoing surgery at that stage of disease and health is extremely risky, esp. combined with a glider's nature and physiology. I just wanted him to have a chance, and it was his only one.

And I know how horrible and hard the last minutes are. They would have been worse had it burst, though...I can't imagine it without the pain meds that were in his system. Now is to find the underlying causes. Aflatoxin is one...but there are other possibilities.

hug2 for your little one
Posted By: USMom

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/23/07 01:26 AM

Jen, I hope you didn't take that as a criticism. It was a retorical question. Maybe a compilation of this information will help. I think Sugeebaby had a glider that died just hours before the gallbladder was to be removed. The vet did a necropsy and it was very diseased. I don't remember what the cause was. Surely there are others.
I do like the idea of an annual ultrasound, kind of like a full physical for humans. Check everything. At first it may seem expensive and pointless, but we would learn from it. Any thoughts on this, anyone?
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/23/07 05:02 AM

Jen, words just can't express... cry upset

On doing an ultrasound at well checks, don't they have to be anaesthetized to get an ultrasound, and isn't there a fair amount of risk in that? While it does seem like it would provide good information and may even save some gliders, I'd hate for someone to bring in a perfectly healthy glider for a well check and lose it due to reaction to anaesthesia.

I wonder if Jeepers's cause of death was similar. The necropsy didn't say anything about her gall bladder, but her liver showed "signs of aflatoxin" too and I never understood that. I only fed crickets a few times and hadn't in quite a while before she got sick. I know they can get it from mealies, but it seems really unlikely, especially since I got my mealies from Grubco, not a local pet store. dunno

Hang in there Jen. I know this is a difficult time for you. We're all here for you. Let us know if you need ANYTHING.
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Surgery on a Glider-WARNING-GRAPHIC - 03/23/07 06:45 AM

Shawna-I didnt' perceive any criticism. smile I was simply replying to your statements-which are good ones by the way, and ones I've been thinking about.

Peeper, yes, they do. Brief anesthesia won't hurt most healthy gliders though. It was just a random thought. Perhaps having one when no other cause of illness can be found, but the glider is definitely sick, would be another.

All I can say is rescues, besides enriching your life, definitely push you to think, and to expand your range for their sake. crazy
Posted By: Xfilefan

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 04/12/07 08:52 PM

Sorry for the delay. We did get Chronos' lab results back-and don't know a whole lot, other than this was something he's had progressing likely more than 2 years. Here is what the vet had to say:

Severe Fibrosis (cirrhosis, or scarring) of the liver
It was 'culchesine' (sp?) <-this one really threw me and no clue if I got the spelling at all means slow scarring, or over quite a bit of time

also that the hepatic fibrosis was progressive

hepatic=pertaining to the liver
fibrosis=a proliferation of fibrous connective tissue. The process occurs normally in the formation of scar tissue to replace tissue lost through injury or infection.

There was severe hyperplasia of the bile ducts (no stone, tumor or obstruction could be found).
Hyperplasia (definition): an increase in the number of cells of a body part that results from an increased rate of cellular division. Types of hyperplasia include compensatory, hormonal, and pathologic

compensatory-an increase in the size or the function of an organ or part to counteract a structural or functional defect
hormonal-pertaining to or resembling horomones
pathologic-pertaining to a condition that is caused by or involves a disease process

They could not identify an underlying cause due to the fact that there was absolutely no normal tissue remaining in the liver to test. Again, that it could even function at all was shocking.

Theories: exposure to a toxin or poison when he was young. It could be a number of them that could have done it.

Long term infection-ie, his anal glands/uti. We have no idea how long before we got him he had the problem with those. I do wish we could have pinpointed and treated it better earlier-we did treat on/off, but without the abscesses draining, it did little good, and took us nearly a year to discover the abscesses and pinpoint the problem.

There wasn't any physical malformation of the organs themselves, other than what was caused by the cirrhosis/nodules, and the enlargement of the gall bladder after it closed itself off.

The vet did say if he had to do it again, he would have. The surgery was truly his only chance.

**I wish we knew more to share with you all, but this may help point someone in the right direction at least, at an earlier stage than where Chronos was, and has told what untreated infection over time is capapble of, if that was the underlying cause. We think of poisons or toxins mostly, but an untreated or poorly treated infection apparently can be just as dangerous to our guys, and take their life just as surely.

Also, I've never before received a card when an animal died from a vet's office. I got one in the mail a few days ago. ohwell Not only did they send one, they did more than sign it, and each office member who'd met him left a personal note-that's what made it really special. Had my in tears all over again! Just thought I'd share the pics of it with you here:

Mods-you can close this thread now at your convenience.

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Posted By: Anonymous

Re: Chronos is in Serious Conditon - 04/12/07 09:31 PM

Closing now at the request of the originator hug2
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