Brain Tumor

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trip8581
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Brain Tumor

Postby trip8581 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 8:38 pm

I posted awhile back on how Roc had been having issues with ataxia (which is being out of balance, unsteady gait) and the vets had diagnosed him as most likely having a slipped disc as that is the more common cause, but other possibilities being issues in the brain like a tumor or mass of some sort. After seeing Roc a few more times (2 different vets at the hospital I work at) and also running bloodwork (which came back completely normal), both vets were leaning towards Roc being more of what they call a brain dog. Something going on in the brain - a tumor, mass or something else and the way he has been acting I was kind of leaning that way as well.

He has gotten even worse as far as the ataxia goes as it is affecting all of his legs now not just his back end. He is very off balance and often times cannot navigate stairs without falling over. He will sometimes even fall over just standing still. He is definitely drunk in his gait. He tends to walk better if he is determined to get somewhere. His back leg tremors are more pronounced sometimes when he stands still. He bunny hops up stairs or over-exaggerates his stepping. He has lost weight without any diet change. He is down to 30 lbs as of yesterday and I like to keep him around 32-33 lbs. And sometimes he is just mentally slow especially when we are outside and it is time to go potty - seems to forget why we are out there.

So yesterday I took him to my regular vet as I wanted to get her opinion on him as she has been seeing him for a few years now and I am also good friends with her. She always tells me her honest assessment of my dog's health and will tell me what she would do if it were her dog. Also, she knows I am planning on moving to Ireland for vet school in a few months, so I needed to know her opinion on whether he could travel (my work does not know yet). She also would be able to compare his condition now to what he looked like prior, so that would be helpful.

She did not think he had a slipped disc as he was not painful at all anywhere. Her honest opinion was that he probably had a brain tumor in his cerebellum as that is the part of the brain that controls motor function. The only way to know for sure would be to do a CT scan or MRI, but since doing one would cost lots of money and not change course of treatment then it really would not be worth it. (especially since I do not have any extra funds right now with planning this move). She said there was no reason to euthanize him as he was a happy go lucky dog who was enjoying life and food. And that he would probably go on living like this for awhile and sure at some point there was a good chance it would kill him, but there was no way to know when as we do not know how fast growing it is. But as long as he is enjoying life - let him live it.

She thought he would do fine on the plane flight, but said we could consult a neurologist closer to the trip. And also that we would probably load his KBr dose (seizure meds) a few days prior just to be safe for seizures since it is such a long flight.

I guess I am not really sure what to do with the information other than just let Roc live his life as happily as possible and just love him and cherish every moment I have with my little man. I can only hope if it is a tumor - it is a very slow growing one, so I can have him for a few more years.

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pblove
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby pblove » Thu Jun 02, 2011 8:44 pm

I hope, too, it is VERY, VERY slow growing and you and Roc have many more good years together. :pray

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elegy
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby elegy » Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:05 pm

my old dog harv had what was probably a brain tumor. his made him seizure like crazy :(

have you guys tried steroids at all? that was one thing the neurologist suggested for harv, but we never tried it because he was so hungry and thirsty already that he was in a constant state of agitation, and i didn't want to add steroids and their hungry/thirsty side-effects on top of that.

best wishes to you and roc!

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Leslie H
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby Leslie H » Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:49 pm

Xanny was among the ranks of likely having a brain tumor when she was nearly 5. Whatever she had, it was neurological, causing in rapid succession, facial paralysis, loss of balance, muscle wasting. She went from being in rip roaring good health to nearly dead between July and Sept. I did not do the MRI, but did CAT scan, spinal tap, full thyroid panel, etc. Nothing. My vet consulting w/numerous others, all who felt it was a brain tumor. As we were so clearly losing her, he suggested a homeopath as a last resort. That was nearly 8 years ago, homeopathy saved her. 24 hours after her 1st dose of remedy, she blinked an eye, something she hadn't been able to do in over a month. Her recovery took a year, she wound up w/only subtle lasting effects.
So, I hope that you are able to make some forward progress w/Roc. You're in my thoughts.

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AllisonPitbullLvr
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby AllisonPitbullLvr » Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:53 pm

pblove wrote:I hope, too, it is VERY, VERY slow growing and you and Roc have many more good years together. :pray


x2

Thinking of you and sending healing vibes to Roc.

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Midnight Sun APBT
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby Midnight Sun APBT » Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:59 pm

Has anyone thought to actually test this dog for NCL-A *actual Ataxia* ??

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trip8581
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby trip8581 » Thu Jun 02, 2011 10:58 pm

Thanks everyone for the good wishes for Roc!

elegy wrote:have you guys tried steroids at all? that was one thing the neurologist suggested for harv, but we never tried it because he was so hungry and thirsty already that he was in a constant state of agitation, and i didn't want to add steroids and their hungry/thirsty side-effects on top of that.


I have not tried steroids yet although my vet did suggest them at a low dose if he got worse. Roc already pees and wants to drink a lot because of his seizure meds that the added steroids might put him over the edge though.

Leslie - I will definitely have to look into homeopathy options for Roc just to see if any of that might help! I can't believe what you went through with Xanny, but it is amazing that she recovered.

Midnight Sun APBT wrote:Has anyone thought to actually test this dog for NCL-A *actual Ataxia* ??


Roc is not a Pit Bull or AmStaff, so it is not possible to test him for NCL-A as it is a genetic disease and there are not tests available for dogs outside of the breeds specified. Roc is a Staffordshire Bull Terrier. He has been tested for the genetic disease which occurs in SBTs which is L2-HGA and he came back clear - he has a lot of the symptoms of this disease which is why I tested him.

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patty
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby patty » Thu Jun 02, 2011 11:01 pm

I will be thinking of your dear Roc and keeping him in my prayers :pray

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Nichole
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby Nichole » Thu Jun 02, 2011 11:44 pm

Oh honey, I hope it is really slow growing and I hope he lives long enough to have a face filled with silvery white hairs <3

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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby mtlu » Fri Jun 03, 2011 12:59 am

:hug: Hoping for the best for Roc and much more time together for the two of you

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trip8581
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby trip8581 » Sat Jun 04, 2011 8:16 pm

Nichole wrote:Oh honey, I hope it is really slow growing and I hope he lives long enough to have a face filled with silvery white hairs <3


Thanks he is already quite white in the face being 10 going on 11 years old, but I was stilling hoping being an SBT I would have him for a few more years.

I am stressed out enough as it is figuring out moving to Ireland for school (funding, housing for 3 dogs, etc) and now I have 2 of them throwing health problems at me to boot, so now I have to worry about them flying over there too!

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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby KittyNyanNyan » Sun Jun 05, 2011 10:58 am

Thinking about you two, hoping it's a slow growing one!

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April
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Re: Brain Tumor

Postby April » Sun Jun 05, 2011 11:24 am

My prayers are with both of you, spend time with roc more than ever. :pray


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