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Fever of unknown origin - Fever is gone but muscle soreness/stiffness is much worse!

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  • Fever of unknown origin - Fever is gone but muscle soreness/stiffness is much worse!

    Please jingle for my boy. He's been running a low grade fever (approx. 102) with mild colic symptoms since Monday. When I arrived to feed today, he also showed neurological problems (had trouble walking ).

    Yes, the vet has been to see him. I'd been talking to the practice three times a day since he first seemed sick (on Monday) and they were able to see him first thing this morning. Today he was tubed with mineral oil and DMSO, got IV fluids, antibiotics and vitamin B, and had blood drawn. The problem is that his symptoms are so varied that it points to any number of things. His fever has been responding to Banamine, but keeps coming back and he's been so sad and lethargic. If he could crawl into my lap, I'm sure he would.

    After treatment he's looking noticeably brighter and more energetic. His fever is gone He's passing manure, interested in eating his (soaked) hay and now is walking around more normally, but the whole situation just has me freaked out. My vet is talking about EPM or West Nile Virus . . . but it's still too early to tell.
    Last edited by Bogie; Oct. 19, 2008, 03:51 PM. Reason: Update
    Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
    EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

  • #2
    Have them run an Ehrlicchia titer too!

    Jingles for your boy!
    <>< Sorrow Looks Back. Worry Looks Around. Faith Looks Up! -- Being negative only makes a difficult journey more difficult. You may be given a cactus, but you don't have to sit on it.

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    • #3
      Amen to the above...you are in PRIME Lyme territory.
      The thing about smart people, is they look like crazy people, to dumb people.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by ChocoMare View Post
        Have them run an Ehrlicchia
        if you were in my neck of the woods this is what i'd put my money on. all of the symptoms point this way.

        glad your boy is feeling better.

        let us know what you find out.
        * trying hard to be the person that my horses think i am

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        • #5
          Poor boy!
          "Uh, if you're going to try that, shouldn't you unplug it first?"

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Bogie View Post
            Please jingle for my boy. He's been running a low grade fever (approx. 102) with mild colic symptoms since Monday. When I arrived to feed today, he also showed neurological problems (had trouble walking ).
            Any leg swelling? Did the vet perform a neurological exam before medicating him? Take blood?

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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by rcloisonne View Post
              Any leg swelling? Did the vet perform a neurological exam before medicating him? Take blood?
              Yes to both. No leg swelling.

              Preliminary blood work will be back tomorrow.

              My Westie was just diagnosed with Lyme and another tick-borne disease so certainly Lyme crossed my mind, too. The ticks have been awful this fall.

              Luckily I have a baseline titer for Lyme that was done last year so we'll have something to compare it to.
              Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
              EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                Based on the initial blood work, my vet says it's most likely Lyme or Ehrlicchia. Plus, he's mildly anemic. He's starting on doxy today while we wait for confirmation. The snap test showed mildly positive for Lyme. Glad I have the baseline for when we get the full results.

                He continues to look better so I suspect the massive dose of antibiotics yesterday really helped.
                Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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                • #9
                  Sending lots of jingles!
                  RIP Bo, the real Appassionato
                  5/5/84-7/12/08

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Bogie View Post
                    Based on the initial blood work, my vet says it's most likely Lyme or Ehrlicchia. Plus, he's mildly anemic. He's starting on doxy today while we wait for confirmation. The snap test showed mildly positive for Lyme. Glad I have the baseline for when we get the full results.

                    He continues to look better so I suspect the massive dose of antibiotics yesterday really helped.
                    NEITHER Lyme nor Ehrlicchia is a "virus". Both are BACTERIAL.

                    A virus is a completely different thing from a bacterium. A virus is basically a bundle of DNA wrapped in a cover. It is not a "living thing" in the usual sense as it can function & multiply only within living cells. Otherwise, a virus is pretty much inert & waiting for the right environment to spring into action.

                    Bacteria ARE living things. They can grow & multiply in a suitable environment such as pond water (depending on the species of bacteria). Bacteria do not need to be inside a living thing to perform the functions of growing & multiplying.

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                    • Original Poster

                      #11
                      Originally posted by Evalee Hunter View Post
                      NEITHER Lyme nor Ehrlicchia is a "virus". Both are BACTERIAL.

                      A virus is a completely different thing from a bacterium. A virus is basically a bundle of DNA wrapped in a cover. It is not a "living thing" in the usual sense as it can function & multiply only within living cells. Otherwise, a virus is pretty much inert & waiting for the right environment to spring into action.

                      Bacteria ARE living things. They can grow & multiply in a suitable environment such as pond water (depending on the species of bacteria). Bacteria do not need to be inside a living thing to perform the functions of growing & multiplying.
                      Duh! Knock head on desk. It would have to be a bacterial infection or it wouldn't respond to the antibiotics .

                      I guess my mind is still processing the cost of buying all of those pills! My Westie gets one pill a day; Kroni needs 90!
                      Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                      EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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                      • #12
                        Is there any chance he ate some toxic plant?

                        Those symptoms are the same I had with my chronic laminitic mare (now deceased). I had every test imaginable, but they were all negative. The fever and low immune system brought her back into full fledge laminitis.

                        Is he vaccinated for West Niles? I don't know much about EPM, but my past research on neurological systems showed that EPM generally shows up one sided.

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                        • #13
                          I hate ticks!

                          I hope he continues to get better.

                          NINETY pills!!! Are they at least somewhat palatable? I can't imagine. Poor guy. Poor you.
                          InnisFailte Pinto Sporthorses & Coloured Cobs
                          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

                          Bits are like cats, what's one more? (Petstorejunkie)

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                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            It is still possible that it is not tick related. However, he is responding well to the antibiotics so that indicates a bacterial infection of some kind. It's probably best to keep treating him with doxy until the detailed results come back from the lab.

                            Thank goodness he is not a picky eater. If I add the 45 pills per meal to his grain, he scarfs it down. Just as well as he is really tired of having me come at him with a syringe. Not to mention he hates the sight of a thermometer right now!
                            Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                            EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              Still looking bad

                              My vet is stumped until the rest of the blood work comes back but my horse is still so uncomfortable! His temp is now normal -- which I attribute to the antibiotics -- he is more alert, and the colic symptoms are better, but now the stiffness that started in his neck is all over and he is having difficulty walking.

                              He is certainly not presenting as any case of Lyme that my vet has seen. Could be Ehrlicchiosis, but I'm very troubled not to have continued to see improvement. Yes, I've been on the phone with my vet, who says while he's eating, drinking and pooping, and since the fever is down I should continue with the doxy, but I'm wondering if any of you have seen this kind of symptom?
                              Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
                              EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

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                              • #16
                                Perhaps he has neurological wind up pain? Basically, what happens is the sympathetic nervous system gets super hyper-sensitive and the body interprets all touch as pain. It's treated with gabapentin. I had results with gabapentin in 1-2 days, and it's cheap enough...might be worth a try?

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