Tuesday, February 02, 2010

Rehab For Reyna

Reyna’s appointment at VetHab was at 1:00 this afternoon. Dr. Sherman was nearly 30 minutes late getting to us, but its hard to be annoyed about that when you consider that he spent about an hour and a half with us. I really like him, and Reyna seems to like him, too (ignoring the fact that she tried to bite him a few times…). He told me about his approach to assessing and working with orthopedic problems, and then he asked for Reyna’s life story. And he really listened. He asked a bunch of questions, answered all of my questions in detail, and then he asked more questions. And he listened. He spent most of the appointment on the floor with Reyna, baby talking to her, petting her and bribing her with Pupperoni. Reyna was very sweet with him, right up until he started examining her.

We went outside to do some walking so he could see her move, both at a very slow speed (so she couldn’t cheat) and then at a slightly faster walk. Then the painful part started. He tried to have her lay on her side while he checked her legs, but she didn’t particularly like that. While she was on her side, though, he tried to exam her feet and wrists. That’s when Reyna bypassed her normal warning signals and went straight to trying to chomp him. Twice. Apparently, her wrists hurt. When he moved on to her rear legs, she got really agitated, so we muzzled her and had her stand for the rest of the exam. She was definitely happier standing, but by that time, happy was a very relative term. As he went through the exam, Dr. Sherman showed me a few of the problems that he was talking about, and had some very nice, clear explanations for much of what he was saying. Not so much of the vet-speak, which was nice. After the exam, he looked at the x-rays and files that had been sent over by our regular vet and the vet school (he prefers to talk to the owner and exam the dog without any preconceived biases he might develop by reading other vets’ comments).

So, the results of all this are: her muscle mass is crap in her hips and along her spine (no surprise there). Her left hip has good flexion (leg moves forward) but bad extension (leg moves backward), and her right hip has decent extension but bad flexion. Her left shoulder is extremely painful, and both wrists have the equivalent of shin splints. Dr. Sherman wants me to step up the Tramadol, and he put her on Gabapentin and Amantadine for pain, as well as generic Pepcid to help keep her stomach settled and extra fish oil for the anti-inflammatory benefits. He’s also planning to make her some neoprene wrist supports to help prevent future shin splints. Reyna starts rehab on Monday (he wanted to give the meds time to kick in, as well as get past the storm that’s forecast for this weekend), and she’ll go three times a week for a few weeks. All I have to do (for now, anyway) is drop her off and pick her up. She’ll spend the whole day at the rehab facility, which will let Dr. Sherman work with her at a pace she can handle. Dr. Sherman said that she’ll never be like she was when she was two years old (thank goodness!), but he’s confident that we can get her back to where she enjoys playing with her ball and she can go for walks with me and Duncan.

I really hope he’s right.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I hope Dr. Sherman is right, too. And I'm glad "he listened"...that right there makes all the difference in the world....especially when it comes to Miss Reyna!!!!!:)Love ya, Mom