Friday, July 18, 2008

Carmella's Test Results

I just spoke with the vet, Dr. Norwood, on the phone and the word is that Carmella's two smears from conjunctiva and vagina showed no inclusion bodies of Distemper. Even so, that still does not difinitively rule it out, because her antibodies for it have actually increased. This is a paradox in that although she was vaccinated in May and that could account for the appearance of antibodies, the vet said that it is less likely because usually all antibodies associated with vaccination would probably have cleared by now. The question that continues to nag at my mind is "How could she even get Distemper if she was in fact vaccinated?"

Carmella resting on my knee

Based on the general dishonesty of the shelter she came from, their witholding of important information, and failure to document certain things, I find myself wondering if they "didn't and said they did". I certainly hope that is not the case.

I am supposed to bring her in on Wednesday in the morning so that the vet can do a culture of cells from the bladder which requires that she be sedated, so it may take a few hours, and then I'll pick her up in the evening. That test will take 3 days to get results back, but it is the most definitive test currently known to rule in or out Distemper.

Carmella doesn't seem to be getting worse at this point but she also seems to have reached a plateau. She continues to cough and have fluid in the lungs although she coughs less frequently.

She has spurts of energy, yet probably is not as energetic as she would be if she was completely free of disease. She is not near as responsive as she was the first day I saw her and although she will come when called, she often seems a little slow to respond and kind of spacey.

My vet e-mailed the expert, Dr. Sears in California, and is waiting for his response as to what to do next and when or if he should go ahead and treat her. The new treatment poses certain problems in that he found out he might need some additional equipment to mix up the Castleman's vaccine in the office. I am praying that there is a way for it to be done in the time-frame we need, if that is necessary. Waiting too long could result in irreversible neurological damage and at that point it would be too late.

This new development about the increased antibodies worries me, as it could mean the beginning of another stage in the disease, and this period of relative calm, just a short pause before a more menacing onslaught.

Meanwhile I am getting as much nutrition into her as possible, and I continue giving her all her medication on schedule, giving her lots of love, and rest.

I feel as if an ominous cloud is hanging over us, not willing to relinquish its stranglehold.

This vet is hanging in there with us, and I'm thankful for that. He seems to have taken this on as a personal battle, and maybe that will be our saving grace; all the difference between life and death.

I need to work on another pair of earrings today in the Carmella Collection. Putting one foot in front of the other. I continue to check my shop in hopes that the financial part of this will start to resolve.


kschaffter said...

oh my gosh, that dog couldn't be ANY cuter!!

Walk in the Woods said...

Carmella is beautiful, May her healing journey be gentle and kind. :)