Tuesday, April 13, 2010

You cannot succeed if you do not try.

Wish I could accurately depict sitting down and taking a deep breath in a blog, but that's what I am doing right now. Was last week crazy or what? Most of you around these parts were off on spring break or your kids were off on spring break. Was it crazy for you too? I spent the week holding down the fort, so to speak, as Dr. C. was on vacation. Lots of sick animals all week, an emergency c-section Tuesday morning, a midnight emergency at the clinic on Friday night, Saturday office hours, a quick day off on Sunday and then spay/neuter at the shelter on Monday. Whew! You know how it goes. We all have those crazy weeks.

So here is a case from a couple weeks ago. Every once in awhile, I get to see something other than a dog or a cat and in this case it was Geri the guinea pig. Geri was just the sweetest little g.pig ever. Her owner brought her in because she hadn't been feeling well for a day or two and also Geri's belly was getting bigger. Not a good thing for any critter but especially one in her geriatric years like Miss Geri was. After examining Geri, I could definitely tell she had something large inside her abdomen. Pyometra (uterine infection) was one of the top possibilities. A tumor was also possible, but guinea pigs don't get tumors as often as little critters like rats do. We decided to give Geri a chance and did exploratory surgery that evening. Unfortunately it was a large tumor, but it was on the right ovary/uterus so I did go ahead and remove the tumor and the entire uterus and both ovaries. Geri actually made it through surgery fine, but died the next morning. I was really hoping it would have been an infected uterus because I think she would have had a better chance of making it overall. I'm including some pictures taken during surgery. This tumor was VERY impressive. It totally filled her abdomen and when we weighed it afterwards, the tumor was 1/3rd of Geri's before surgery body weight. That would be like an 150 pound woman having a 50 pound tumor removed and then the woman weighing 100 pounds after tumor removal.

Tumor picture taken during surgery.
Geri and her tumor laying side by side on the surgery table right before going to recovery.

I am so grateful to Geri's owner for giving me the chance to try and save Geri's life. It didn't work in the end, but as with so many other things in life, you cannot succeed if you don't try first.

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