Please please help us

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Hi. I’ve never used a forum before so I hope I can find any replies. I’m really desperate for help. My nearly 10 year old Springer cross has the most horrendous arthritis all over and is rapidly going down hill. She is everything to me and I am changing my whole life to ensure I’m doing everything I can to manage it. She is on every supplement available, has physio and acupuncture but nothing’s working and the conventional medication is doing anything.

She is currently on full dose metacam and 600 mg of gabapentin. I’ve tried insider (no effect at all ) and tramadol which completely disagreed with her.

 

We we are at the end of the road but I’m not willing to give up. Tonight the vet suggested that PLT might be worth a try.

 

Please does anyone have any any experience with this old drug or have any drug combinations that are really effective.

 

Would really appreciate any replies.

Thank you

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Hi

 

Thanks for your response much appreciated.

We had physio every week for 4 weeks and then cut back but will up that again.

Not sure whether to continue with the acupuncture or not?!

i agree about the gaba but she is better on it than off it even if better isn’t great. She still has moments of sparkle which I wasn’t getting before.

Will speak to the vet about the other options, he’s very good at chatting through things with me, as I’m sure you can imagine I don’t just accept everything he says or prescribes 😊

Will ask about a pain specialist.

I am trying to minimise vet visits and traumatic situations because she gets herself in such a state that it affects her liver and really traumatises her and I’m trying to minimise any upset.

Already apply heat pads but will apply ice to joints.

Im really hoping that she perks up when the sun comes out. She hates rain and dark days like all us outdoor workers do so hoping sun will cheer her up.

Its certainly not time to give up on her and will try every option I can.

On the downside she is taking 80% of my wage 😱 Will spend what it takes but my God arthritis is expensive !

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wow … you should be majorly proud of yourselves to start!

1. Maybe gaba isn’t right ? I totally overcooked my dog on it caught in a spiral of … but what if it’s helping… Holly was better off of it… so maybe reduce that and see if you get glimmers back.

trial amantadine

trial amitryptylline

2. Physio/ laser/ massage more often than that – go for once a week minimum and see effect

use heat on compensation areas and cold on joints

3. Accept down days… Holly just had a down day and now is much more spritely – she needed to rest!!

4. Paracetamol – care with liver – but Holly has a 1/3 left after her op and we are doing ok with using this

5. Focus on the joints – hot and swollen and not getting better after rest- worth a joint tap?

6. Referral to pain specialist?

7. Get a neuro check?!

 

Sorry rushing today xxx

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Hi. Thanks for the response. Will try and answer your questions.

  • The arthritis has generally been slow progressing from a young age but the last 6 months have seen a massive rapid decline. Elbows and hocks very swollen and thickened. Very lame and awkward gait. Sore in muscles through her back and neck. She has been diagnosed with osteoarthritis.
  • She is not generally unwell but has liver issues we also contend with. She is exceptionally tired but that must be down to drugs and possible pain. We have frequent blood tests because of this.
  • She was put on gabapentin as a last resort as I’m uncomfortable with this drug. The results are minimal but better than tramadol. We started on a low dose and she is currently on 200mg 3 times a day. She isn’t wobbly thank god. Does stumble a fair  bit though. Leg supports help that.
  • She is on natural supplements. Golden paste yumove and nutramed etc Was on riaflex before yumove. Scared to stop them incase they are helping.
  • We have recently found a new physio who is great. We have a session every 3-5 weeks. She uses the laser and the machine with the pads to stimulate muscle?! At this point in time she feels hydrotherapy wouldn’t be effective.
  • We have started acupuncture to no avail. A session every week for 5 weeks and I see no change.

Spoke to the vet last night and he basically said that we can try upping the gabapentin but we have no options left. He said possibly PLT is worth a try as we have nothing to lose so I’m busy researching that

I rescued her at 12 months and physically and mentally she was in a horrendous state. Prior to the recent decline she has always been the life and soul of the party. Funny, naughty and up for anything. This character is slowly disappearing and it’s breaking my heart.

She does not get left alone and comes to work with me ( horses )  she wanders around the yard and fields and I take her for a bimble to different places in the afternoon. A lot of the time she forgets she’s so stiff and try’s to do stuff she used to do so I have to watch her like a hawk to prevent injuries and accidents  I try to mentally stimulate her as much as possible as I feel she is frustrated not being able to live the life she wants that she used to have i.e. Constantly on the go doing active fun exciting things  I guess only being 10 she isn’t ready to slow down

Any advice would be much appreciated.

Answered question
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Hey there

this sounds awful … I’m really sorry you’re having such a tough time.

1. Did it come on suddenly or has it been a slow progress? And what are your main clinical signs.

Is she unwell with it? Is it immune mediated arthritis and not osteoarthritis?

2. Has bloods and X-rays been taken? Where is the arthritis?

3. Was a neurological exam performed to ensure you haven’t got comorbidity with a neurological disease ?

4. Did the gabapentin help or nothing or possibly made worse and more wobbly? What dose and how often?

5. Care of over supplementing … wasted funds and you could be giving conflicting meds?

6. Have you had other therapies suggested by physio or did you just have a session?

Sorry but without the above it’s hard to advise xx

H&H

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