Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Update on Sadie

Sadie's additional bloodwork came back, confirming a diagnosis of hypothyroid. Her TSH reading was not just slightly high but very significantly high, so she is now on Thyroxine for the rest of her life. It may be 4-6 weeks before there are observable changes such as more energy and loss of weight, and we will test again at that time to ensure we have her on the correct dose. We'll also check her ALT liver count again at that time, as it was slightly on the high side as well.

Sadie's very slow heart rate is also a symptom of hypothyroid, and when the heart rate drops too low and there is a lack of blood flow to the brain, an Ischemic stroke can occur - that may be what happened Thursday night.

Alternatively, an interesting aspect of hypothyroidism is that it can present as peripheral nerve damage, with a weakened back end or loss of limb control. Without subjecting Sadie to further tests such as CT scan or MRI, we shall likely never know if Sadie actually had a stroke the other day or if it was nerve problems. Either way, getting the hypothyroid under control should decrease the risk of another incidence.

And it will be nice to see Sadie get her energy back and resume her play activities with the other dogs. Who knows - there may be a monster-dog hiding inside that soft, sweet, quiet, calm furry coat!


Anonymous said...

Hi Jean,
I was sad to read about Sadie's condition. Hopefully the meds will work and Sadie will be better soon.


Nana & MP said...

Oh man. :( I hope it's not too difficult to keep the thyroid balanced. I think Connie also has some experience with thyroid issues with older doggies. Sending lots of healthy vibes to sweet Sadie!

Anonymous said...

First off, Im so happy i found your blog! what a great read! What prompted me to post is that im just learning more about hypothyroidism, as Draimans bloodtest showed that he was low, but the vet didnt say anything about treatment or symptoms, but ive noticed he is unable to tolerate much excersise, and Im hoping maybe you can tell me where i should go from here? more tests? meds? He is only 2 yrs.... any insight you may have would be appreciated! Samantha and the bully gang!

Jean said...

Hi Sam - If the blood test only covered the standard T3 and T4 thyroid tests, then be sure to ask for the TSH test as well. Sadie's initial test showed a problem with the T4 reading, so we followed up with the TSH test, which confirmed the diagnosis of hypothyroidism. She is now on thyroxin, which she will need for life.
I haven't checked with my holistic vet yet for any natural supplements or homeopathic treatments as I want to wait until her blood is retested in 6 weeks before introducing remedies that may confound the readings. However, I do know that it is considered by many to be an autoimmune disease and/or environmentally reactive (ie allergies/pollutants etc), so antioxidants such as blue-green algae are helpful. Additionally multivitamins with minerals such as zinc and selenium are sometimes recommended as is Vit. C .
Skin problems are typical of hypothyroidism, and as Draimen belongs to a breed that can be prone to skin disorders it's probably really important to do all the stuff one does to treat skin problems even if he isn't showing signs of it yet (give fish oil supplements, for example).
Two is pretty young to develop hypothyroidism, though not unheard of. I'd certainly get the TSH test done, if you haven't already.

Anonymous said...

thanks jean! Drai has allergies, and has had demodex as well! I appreciate the info! Ill definatly look into the other test! Sam