Saturday, July 11, 2009

Shelby's Splenectomy

For the last few months, Shelby was feeling more and more lethargic and stopped eating her food in the mornings. We had to beg her to eat some of it. When Mom & Dad was visiting in April/May, she was taken in to the vet a couple of times after she had an incident where she fell out of the parked truck after a big day at the beach.

Still a month later, she had little energy and didn't want to do much other than rest. We took her to the vet several times for blood tests, urinalysis, etc., and learned that she still had traces of ehrlichiosis, a common tick disease out here in Saipan, but also another one called babeiosis. The imizol injection to treat babeiosis was short-lived. She only felt a bit better for two days and returned to her listless self.

Last Thursday (10 days ago), I asked Dr. Tudor to do the Xray as she was showing no signs of improvement and he was concerned about the possibility of cancer. Well, Dr. Tudor discovered a large mass inside her ribcage in the Xray as the spleen had enlarged and pushed all of her other organs to the rear of her body. He operated successfully to remove the 2-3lb. cancerous mass and she is improving daily. No wonder she didn't want to eat or play! She had that huge tumor in her stomach, obstructing her other organs.

Dr. Tudor did a wonderful job saving Shelby's life. Thank you very much!!
Immediately after surgery, she was still "out" but was breathing well. For the first few nights, her temperature rose and she panted a lot but she's back to her normal breathing.
Dr. Tudor said that he cut through five layers in her stomach with the top being joined by 15 staples. All of her inner stitches are dissolvable but her staples will be removed on Monday.
If you want to see part of the spleen and mass, scroll down.
If not, STOP HERE (viewer discretion is advised).
This is the image of the mass inside the rubbish pail. It's partially covered by the surgical towels.


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