April 30th 2012 2:43 pm
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My beautiful baby girl Luna Lou passed away in my arms on the way to the hospital the night of Wednesday, April 25th, 2012.
The staff at the emergency hospital believe that her medical condition, chylothorax, was misdiagnosed by the first vet she saw. The cause of her condition was diagnosed as a tear in the thorasic duct, but it is now believed that Luna had a tumor instead that caused her symptoms. They believe that this tumor finally ruptured, cause her rapid decline in health, until she collapsed that Wednesday night.
She will be missed forever.
February 27th 2012 3:38 pm
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Rushed Luna back in to the vet today for another chest tap, to have more fluid drained from her chest cavity (see previous diary entry for info). They had been saying that they were getting around 300ml of fluid out every 6-7 days. This time it was only 5 days so I was quite concerned when I took her in this morning. BUT, they only drained 60ml of fluid! To me, that is hopeful. But our vet seems to be a pessimist, and isn't very familiar with Luna's condition. So I believe I will look into switching vets. I'm not pleased at all with how we've been treated so far by this current vet. The rest of the staff is great, but I need the vets help with this, and he seems hesitant to try anything but the risky surgery. We CAN'T afford the surgery, and I'm not sure Luna's case needs it even if we could afford it. So I begin making phone calls tomorrow, and gathering info to see what is the next step to take. While Luna is feeling better is the best time to make the switch, instead of waiting for another emergency chest tap. I'll keep updated here as to how things go. Thanks for reading.
February 23rd 2012 5:42 pm
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Luna hasn't been well lately. On Tuesday, February 7th, Luna was diagnosed with a condition called chylothorax. Basically, we believe there to be a tear in her thoracic duct in her chest. This tear is causing fluid to leak out, and build up in her chest. The build up of fluid is putting too much pressure on her heart and lungs. She first presented with difficulty breathing, was lethargic, and stopped eating. We've dealt with this condition before, in my Mom's cat Lil Bear before he passed away due to an unrelated condition. He made a complete recovery from his chylothorax, so we are hopeful that Luna will as well. When her breathing starts to become too labored, I take her to the vet for a "chest tap". They stick a needle into her chest to drain out the fluid, allowing her lungs to expand better, so that she can breathe better for a few more days. We can't afford the risky surgery ($2,000-$3,000), so we are doing the same medical treatment we did for Lil Bear instead. She is taking Rutin, 500mg, 3 times a day. The pills are huge since it is a supplement meant for humans (found at your local health food store) so even cutting the pills in half we were having difficulty getting her to swallow them. We contacted teh local compounding pharmacy and had the vet call in a prescription to have the Rutin compounded into liquid form. She takes this SO much easier, and they can even make it triple fish flavored! Luna is doing well today after having a chest tap again yesterday. I believe that was her third chest tap since her diagnosis, not counting the fluid they removed to test on the day they diagnosed. She has also had bloodwork and 2 chest xrays.
This is a terrible condition, and there is still a chance that it could take Luna's life. We aren't giving up yet though, and will continue to fight this! Many cats heal on their own within a few weeks, so we are hoping that the Rutin will help her body cope until the tear heals. Her current vet also put her on a diuretic, which is a tiny half of a pill, so she takes it easily. Having meds so many times a day is unpleasant for her, but it will be worth it if it saves her life.
We believe the chylothorax to be idiopathic, meaning there is no knows cause that we can find at this point. There are many things that CAN cause this, such as an injury from a fall, or heart problems. He heart sounds good at this point, but the vet has suggested that we get an ultrasound of Luna's heart, just to be safe and to look for any defects. We just haven't had the few hundred dollars for a test when we are already paying for the other tests and the constant chest taps. Care Credit has really helped us though, so that we had a way to pay right away for her treatment, that we can pay off later.
If anyone would like to know more about this condition, there is tons of information out there, you can google it. You can even google "chylothorax" and "rutin" together to read about the use of Rutin to treat this condition. I will try to keep updated on here about her progress.
If we can get her to beat this, she will be 10 years old in May. I plan on throwing her a birthday party, she definitely deserves one! I have found some black cat balloons even, so I will decorate with those. It is difficult to find black cat things when it's not around Halloween, but I managed to find some things online.
That's all I have for tonight. Thanks for reading.