Saturday, June 06, 2009

A difference in medical opinion oh boy

Submit each day to God, knowing that He is God over all your tomorrows. When God brings you to it, God will bring you through it.
For those of my loyal followers and readers, you know that I've written about my mom and her momerisms. What are momerisms you might ask? They are what we credit to our lifelong mentors -- our moms. All of their wisdom, humor and down-home sage advice. I've been quite thankful to have such a mom who is incredibly intelligent as well. I've poked, prodded and nudged her to get out more often to share her remarkable wit and intelligence online with my friends and followers. She's at least made an appearance ... now we can only hope for the best. 

So, what did I do the other day when I was faced with a heartbreaking dilemna? The thought that one of our beloved stray country club cats, Pug, might have a broken leg? You see, I had called a half dozen pet care facilities to try and arrange affordable care. After all, I was attached to this cat despite the fact she was not one of my pets. I had previously cared for her when she had a deep gash type wound in her left side -- oh, that only cost $152.49 at Saint Francis Animal Hospital. Not a huge amount of money, but a bit of an investment for a stray cat.

On Friday, I took Pug to First Coast No More Homeless Pets FCNMHP on the northside of Jacksonville. Thank God for FCNMHP -- I thank them as do many other residents of Jacksonville and Northeast Florida! We are so thankful that they opened their new clinic that can handle up to 200 spay and neuter procedures daily.

The capable vet at FCNMHP did her exam of Pug, manipulating Pug's leg and hip. She thought the hip joint seemed enlarged or swollen. I was thankful when she initially said there would be no need to amputate the leg as the limb wasn't necrotic -- "Such a limb injury should heal," she said. Yeah! However upon further exam, it was shown that Pug was sensitive about her head. Her pupils were two different sizes and one of her eyes has a cataract. "Let's put her on the floor and watch her," said the vet. It was but a few seconds of watching Pug try to stand and then walk. She was quite unsteady on her feet, particularly her back feet. "It looks like vestibular disease," said the vet. Oh no, I'm thinking! That sounds worse than a broken leg.

So FCNMHP completed the exam of Pug, giving her subcutaneous fluids and writing a prescription for Amoxicillin Suspension. It was recommended that I take Pug to a full-service vet who could do a pelvic spine x-ray and a complete examination with labs to check her bodily functions. I was seeing $$s dollar signs you all. Gosh, poor Pug.

I arrived at Saint Francis Animal Hospital about twenty-five minutes later. As it was lunch time, Pug couldn't be seen right away. Luckily, I guess, she was a returning patient from September 11, 2008, so she was in their system already. I opted to leave her with the paperwork I had from her FCNMHP visit. It was about 4pm when I returned to pick-up Pug. They dispensed Prednisone, Clavamox Drops, and Animax for me to administer to Pug. Hello out there to all of you who have had to give a sick cat a pill. As of this writing, I still have not attempted the Prednisone pill -- at least it's a small one. This morning we worked on our technique for the Clavamox Drops -- I'm not sure how much of the 1ml dose went down Pug's throat.

We've got Pug settled now in our guest bathroom. Since she is too loopy or wobbly to negotiate a litter box, I've got newspapers and a towel down on part of the floor. In another area, I've placed a low container of fresh water. The vet gave us 3 cans of A/D cat food -- Pug ate a bit of that last night, but doesn't seem to be very hungry today. It's dificult at best to determine if there is any improvement in her condition since we found her on Wednesday. She still tries to get up and walk but her back legs give out on her.

Pug has a follow-up exam on Tuesday with Saint Francis Animal Hospital. The results from her labs should be in by then and we hope to take it from there. You know what's so ironic about caring for an animal is that more has been spent on their care than on mine! Isn't it just incredible how much it costs these days to take an animal or pet to the vet? It'll break your wallet!

veterinary care at Saint Francis Animal Hospital in Jacksonville for Pug the cat
I know a little about a difference in medical opinion as in Pug's case, with the possible diagnosis of a broken leg, I got a difference in medical opinion. One person said it would cost me a couple thousands of dollars for surgery for the break along with dressing changes and follow-up care -- Oh boy! Next person said I should euthanize the animal -- Oh boy! Third person said I should amputate the leg -- Oh boy indeed!!!

So, back to the momerisms! Mom sends me this email today with the comment, "Boy, if this doesn't hit the nail on the head, I don't know what does!" Yes, mom! It hits the nail right smack dab on that head -- it sure does. And, I thank you for this.
Two different doctor's offices -- Hey, wouldn't you know it? It is a difference in medical opinion!
Two patients limp into two different medical clinics with the same complaint. Both have trouble walking and appear to require a hip replacement.

The FIRST patient is examined within the hour, is x-rayed the same day and has a time booked for surgery the following week.
The SECOND sees his family doctor after waiting 3 weeks for an appointment, then waits 8 weeks to see a specialist, then gets an x-ray, which isn't reviewed for another week and finally has his surgery scheduled for 6 months from then.

Why the different treatment for the two patients?

The FIRST is a Golden Retriever. The SECOND is a Senior Citizen.

Next time take me to a vet!