Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Carmella Still Waits for Medical Procedure


Today was down, then up, and then down again. I decided to try Dr. Brantly in one last attempt to appeal to his sense of social responsability, but it turned out he had little, relaying through his receptionist that he would never feel comfortable injecting Newcastle vaccine into the spinal canal (apparently even if not doing so was going to end up killing her). He'd come closest of any of the ones I'd asked, but it seemed as though his initial mindset only got increasingly closed as he ruminated about all the "what ifs". The trouble is he had no alternatives to offer, so who was he to be dead set against this method if it was her only hope. I suspect, knowing this, he offered up a lead at the University of Florida Veterinary clinic, saying maybe they'd attempt it. I made the long-distance call and gave a run-down of Carmella's situation to a woman in the small animal clinic who in turn took down mine and Dr. Sears information and said she'd have a vet call me back by around 5:00 PM. In fact it didn't take near that long. There was a bubbly woman on the other end who sounded hopeful, so I assumed it was good news. Wrong again. She reported to me that all the vets in the neuro department "don't do that", and that "they know nothing about it" stating as others had that it was "still experimental". Well, duh! Of course they'd never heard about it and of course it's "experimental" because nobody has given it a chance to be published. That's why I gave them Dr. Sears' contact information, so that they could find out about it, but did they even call or e-mail him before dismissing this treatment out of hand? No. Well, sorry, but that just doesn't pass with me. Nobody can spreak intelligently against doing something if they won't take the time to investigate it first. That just means that they want to remain ignorant. They sure didn't get their degree in veterinary medicine by having the knowledge pop into their heads by osmosis! They had to put some effort into learning the material. They'd have been kicked out for sure if they came into their professor on the day of an exam and whined, "I don't know anything about this so I'm not doing the exam." They'd have been told pretty fast to get their ass into the library and start reading, and start doing the homework and going to class, or get out; that they don't give honorary degrees in vet school. That kind of obstinate clinging to ignorance is something I cannot tolerate. When I was in college we were expected to back up our argument if we were going to disagree with something, and that's how it should be. In order to really do that one must have some leg to stand on based in logic.

Absence of data or lack of precedence does not immediately render any hypothesis invalid, and it justifies the furthering of study, not the abandonment of it.

I asked the woman on the other end of the line just how we could make this not experimental, and she was not particularly forthcoming, but finally said that they have a seperate research department and that I could speak to them. OK, now we may be getting somewhere, I thought. She did not know the number but had the operator transfer my call. Instead it was picked up by the live answering service who had just come on shift and they did not know the number to connect me to, so I'll have to see if I can find contact information on the website or call tomorrow.

We are pretty much back to square one.

I wrote Dr. Sears and let him know that this turned out another dead end, said we needed him to do conferences, and for some vet, any vet, to publish something.

If Dr. Norwood could at least publish Carmella's experience with NDV in the body that would at least provide one citation that could help legitimize the second half as I am approaching vets. You'd think the way vets are reacting that I was asking them to commit criminal acts, not an act of heroism.

In fact, it is indeed criminal to fail to act in a life-threatening circumstance. A disease is in effect a "natural disaster", but when there is something that can be done to intervene but those who are able do not, that is the true definition of negligence. Does this fact escape those who can but do nothing? Does this not bother their conscience at all?

Maybe they think Carmella is just one dog and they think it's OK to let her languish, turning their attention to those they can easily save by risking nothing, that in the grand scheme of things her life is just not that important to go out on a limb for, but the fact remains that they are aware of the gravity of the situation and they know that this will not go away and that more white matter in her brain is being sacrificed each day they look the other way, and that this dog and this owner have feelings. Would it be OK with them if doctors sat there and let this happen to their wife or child? I don't think so. Maybe they believe that being that attached to a dog is silly and overly sentimental, but if we start picking and choosing whose life is worthy and whose isn't then who is to prevent that kind of calousness from coming home to roost when the grim reaper decides to knock on our door?

These guys keep thinking worst case scenario, but what if this not only had no adverse effects, but was a glowing success, just as it was in the body? What if Carmella went on to live happily ever after once the procedure was completed? Not all "what ifs" have to be negative.

We as a society and as a species must base our lives upon possibility, not be ruled by trepidation. Fear is only useful in the short-term, but it can keep us stuck if it becomes a way by which we live our lives from cradle to grave.

I believe that The Creator did not give us a brain and the technologiy to use it in order for us to choose to ignore that which has been provided. Medical discoveries are a beautiful thing and we should embrace them, not stay trapped in a free-floating fear of progress based on what we don't know. Knowledge is power and with power comes inevitably, responsability. Maybe that is the real crux of the matter; responsability. If we remain ignorant we can always fall back on that ignorance to avoid responsability, but that is to live like Peter Pan refusing to grow up and meet the world head-on, hiding in illusions and creating walls to hide behind.

To believe that the outcome of going outside our comfort zone is always going to be bad is to have a very negative world view. Sometimes trying new things can really add something valuable to our lives. You know what they say, "Nothing ventured, nothing gained." If the answer does not live within the lines then if we want it we must be willing to go outside them to get it.

After a long dry spell I made a sale! (I am getting it ready at the crack of dawn), my Click Beetle bracelet with a really cool Chevron bead in it.


Carmella was restless again today. I let her outside several times in the back yard to run around. When her legs work she is very graceful, like a jackrabbit darting through the thicket, and at times I can almost forget that she is still living with a monster inside her Central Nervous System, one which will ultimately bring her to her knees if it is not stopped in time. For just a short time I am lost in the moment as she glides like a raptor across the landscape, and then she falls, and I realize where I am.

http://Giftbearer.etsy.com

16 comments:

blackfeatherfarm said...

Ok, I don't know if you know of this or have tried it, but you can use colloidal silver for dogs and it kills viruses, nothing else does. This is like a miracle drug and is safe. I don't know if this is spitting in the wind, but in your situation it can't hurt to try it. Contact wolfcreek@earthlink.net they sell it and can give you dosing instructions. Might be worth a try.

Giftbearer said...

I'll take a look. Somebody from one of the human autoimmune yahoo groups sent me some similar information but it was another manufacturer but she was using it for Parvo. She told me that it seemed to help the body symptoms in her puppy but she wasn't sure whether it was killing the virus or just acting as an anti-inflammatory.

Right As Rain Creations said...

Awww, I am so sorry you and your beautiful dog are going through this! I hope you find help and a cure soon. Virtual hugs aren't the same as a real one, but here ya go!
*hugs* oh, and *pat on the head* for doggy! :)

Giftbearer said...

Thanks, right as rain! We're not giving up, still hanging in there. Keep reading. I'll probably have another update tonight!

Emma said...

I am sending good wishes for healing for Carmella. I hope there is good news soon...

Giftbearer said...

Thanks so much emma. Stay tuned.

The Great Ethan Allen said...

The vets are playing CYA with you it sounds like. they are probably afraid of legal action. And they probably don't want to take the risk for just a "pet". I say this having lost our cat because a routine medical surgery was not performed on this side of our state. and alas.. our funds and time ran out. ( we spent three days feverishly trying to get funds) Anyway, I don't think vets train much farther than the shots and fixing phase. any surgery seems like a "specialty request" and those folks are limited. I again, wish you the best for your puppy. Sounds like people here are trying to help ya out too. good luck!

shells said...

Thanks for stopping by :) Good luck to Carmella!

DAINTYCROCHETBYALY said...

so cute! I love dogs! :-)

DAINTYCROCHETBYALY said...

be faithful! i hope the best for both of you! :-)

Debbie Gootter said...

So sad about your pup...you are in my thoughts!

Jen said...

I hope you find what you are looking for! Poor dog! Give her hugs for me!
-10oneworld on etsy

UniqueNurseGranny said...

So sorry.What about calling some of the other State vet programs like Ala and here in NC.It is tragic and so hard on you roo..

Pfeiffer Photos said...

Hugs from us to you and Carmella, too. We went through an illness with our cat this summer and it was rough. She didn't make it but we didn't give up.

Take care,
Tina & Chris

Giftbearer said...

Thank you all so much. I really needed this support tonight. Keep reading.

thebeadedlily said...

I just wanted to day, about your friend, just because she didn't say it doesn't mean she doesn't think of you like that. Perhaps 'best friend' didn't hit the right note in the conversation to her.
I'm just saying that what comes out of our mouths is censored and it isn't always what's in our heart.