After much ado and the discovery of two presumed unrelated stones (kidney and bladder), after much testing and drawing of blood, after two ultrasounds and lots of x-rays and an endoscopic violation from top to bottom, veterinary medicine has finally settled on the guess du jour. Apparently Grendel has some kind of bacterial infection in the lining of his small intestine. It’s caused significant inflammation and irritation, not to mention a wee bit of bleeding. He will be on antibiotics for two weeks and will be on steroids for the foreseeable future.
While I hope this cures his suffering of late and helps him feel and get better, I am concerned about prolonged use of steroids for the reasons I already discussed in response to moving him from steroids to an inhaler to treat his asthma. Sadly, at present, he’s weak and in moderately poor condition, so I’m quite willing to put him back on steroids to help overcome this ailment. He’ll require monitoring to ensure this is working and take appropriate action if not.
As for the stones, they also require monitoring at least every six months. There is concern about both of them. The concern, however, is not as significant as what we are currently treating, and it’s quite possible he could pass one or both of them (with some degree of discomfort, undoubtedly, although of that we cannot be certain). It’s more likely at least the kidney stone will eventually cause problems, but its location means he would likely have to lose the entire kidney, and that’s unnecessary at present. The bladder stone may also have to be removed surgically as it is slightly larger; it would not be touched, unless it causes problems first, until something is done about the kidney stone.
He is doing better for now (prior to the new treatment) as they’ve been able to stimulate his appetite while suppressing the nausea. He remains lethargic and near sedate, sleeps excessively, is disinterested in all but cursory and short-lived play, and generally demonstrates a muffled personality quite unlike his normal self.
I am certainly hoping the new treatment is effective and addresses the major issues he’s suffering from at present. We’ll see beginning tomorrow morning when he starts this new medical regimen of unpleasantness.