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PSA Gentizol causing deafness in dogs

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  • PSA Gentizol causing deafness in dogs

    Once again, my OCD behavior about reading drug inserts has paid off. The basenji boy was diagnosed with an ear infection 10 Feb. The vet prescribed oral antibiotics and Gentizol ointment. A known side effect of the Gentizol is hearing loss in geriatic dogs. B-boy is 11. After about 1 week on this stuff, he experienced a noticeable hearing loss. We stopped treatment immediately and called the vet.

    She knew this was a possible side effect but thought it so rare as to not be worth mentioning. ARGHHH!! She suggested I stop using it; ummm it's already in the trash!

    She asked to see him again, and amazingly enough confirmed that he was pretty much deaf as a post. From what I've been able find online, the hearing loss is "usually" temporary. Soon to be EX-vet thinks he should regain his hearing, if he's going to, in 1-2 weeks.

    Anyone else gone through this?

  • #2
    While this is a known potential side effect, it is VERY rare. And honestly, if we told every owner about every rare side effect most of them would never treat their dog for anything. Or they treat and everytime the dog takes a second longer to react to something outside they are calling in a panic.

    If this is your only issue with this vet I think you may be premature in planning to find a new one over this episode.

    Gentizol is the same as Malotic, or Otomax. And how many dogs have been on one of those drugs multiple times with no issues? Temporary deafness happens in less than 1 in 500 dogs. And that's just from the pups in our clinic, we sell over 500 tubes of Gentizol a year, and MAY see one dog every 2-3 years with any noticable hearing loss
    You can't fix stupid.... but you can breed it!

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by Horsegal984 View Post
      While this is a known potential side effect, it is VERY rare. And honestly, if we told every owner about every rare side effect most of them would never treat their dog for anything
      My vet tells me the potential negatives so I can make the decision. It is not my vet's prerogative to withhold information.

      For a common medical procedure my surgeon appeared at my bed the day before and said " you understand you may die".
      That is fair and right. And in the 1950s drs wouldn't tell patients that they had cancer. I have no idea what the reasoning was behind that, but withholding information is a not appropriate In most cases. I can think of a few cases where it would be though.

      Comment


      • #4
        I can't imagine telling the EVERY potential side effects for every single drug dispensed. Any drug, any time can cause any reaction. Yes even death. Which would you pick? Top 3, top 10 list of potential side effects? When dispensing meds to a patient I always go over the 1-2 most common..

        We dispense the active ingredient gentimicin several times a day every working day topically for ears. The last drug induced deafness we had in a dog was not even on topicals, just oral Antibiotics, and that was 2 years ago.

        Sorry to hear about your pup. Hope he's feeling and hearing better soon!
        Lisa

        Comment

        • Original Poster

          #5
          While this is a known potential side effect, it is VERY rare. And honestly, if we told every owner about every rare side effect most of them would never treat their dog for anything. Or they treat and everytime the dog takes a second longer to react to something outside they are calling in a panic.
          It is my responsibility and my call to decide which of the vet's recommendations to accept. To presume that I would "never treat" my dog for anything if I were fully informed is insulting and inaccurate. If your clients are such morons, well, there's natural selection in action.

          If this is your only issue with this vet I think you may be premature in planning to find a new one over this episode.
          It's not the first issue; it's the last straw. I am compelled however to point out that when something is listed as a known side effect in geriatric dogs and a client is there with a geriatric dog, to not mention it strikes me as lazy at best. I can understand not mentioning it to someone with an 8 week old puppy.

          Gentizol is the same as Malotic, or Otomax. And how many dogs have been on one of those drugs multiple times with no issues? Temporary deafness happens in less than 1 in 500 dogs. And that's just from the pups in our clinic, we sell over 500 tubes of Gentizol a year, and MAY see one dog every 2-3 years with any noticable hearing loss
          OK, is the above actual data or a collection of anecdotes? If your practice actually is collecting and trending data, my hat's off to you. If the drug manufacturer is actually collecting and trending data, even better and I'd really appreciate insight to that data.

          What I'm really interested in is a) how many affected dogs regain their hearing and b) what is the typical timeframe for doing so. Preferably some real scientific data from a study realizing that given the rarity of reaction that a study may not be available.

          I am reminded of an MD who on my second visit told me that the antibiotics I'd been on for two weeks already had the potential side effect of interferring with oral contraceptives. Call it a rush to judgement, but I fired him too.

          Comment


          • #6
            Sorry if I was unclear in my post. I didn't mean that a vet should not discuss any side effects, just that if we read EVERY single side effect that has ever been documented would scare the snot of out most owners. However, we DO always send home a drug info sheet with new prescriptions so owners can read it themselves if they have questions, and we make sure to talk about any drug interactions and common side effects.

            And since your post was only about this incident, I had to assume(which worked as well as always!) that you were only upset about this incident. If you're had other issues then I certainly understand this being a deal breaker.

            Just at our clinic, we order an average of 3 boxes of Gentizol a month, 12 tubes in a box. Which means about 430 tubes a year going out the front door, and hte only case we have seen since 9/08 with any concern for hearing loss occured just after I came back from maternity leave which would have been summer of '10. So either any loss is so subtle owners aren't able to notice, or it's not happening very often. For the dog we did see, his hearing returned about a week after stopping the medication.
            You can't fix stupid.... but you can breed it!

            Comment

            • Original Poster

              #7
              Sorry if I came across as the client from hell; I'm really only the client from purgatory!

              Thanks for the more detailed information. It's been almost a week and sometimes it seems like he is hearing some things, but nothing reliably convincing that he is back to normal. It's simply heartbreaking to see what was a very confident dog become insecure. It seems like he is very unsettled by not being able to hear; ears frequently rotating as if to find some sound.

              Comment


              • #8
                I believe the reason that they include drug inserts is so you can read further about the drug and any side effects. Most people don't read them. Lucky for your dog you did. However I'm not sure a vet should have to memorize and state every rare side effect of every drug. Common ones, like he is likely to vomit on your car seat, are good to hear before you leave the office. You also need to consider the consequences of not treating the infection as they also cause deafness. Jingles to your boy and hoping his hearing returns but if it doesn't I'm sure he will adjust. We had one that was totally deaf and she learned hand signals very quickly.

                Comment


                • #9
                  I agree with atlatl. My dog is completely deaf after using Malotic. I only used it three times, but I noticed her hearing going after the second dose. I called the vet and he said it would take two weeks for her hearing to return. It makes me wonder as to why I wasn't told this in the first place for I would have never used it. I am planning on taking legal action if my dogs hearing doesn't return. I will sue the pharmaceutical company and the vet also.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Your first post here and you dragged up a year-old thread.

                    What are going to sue for? The warning about occasional deafness is quite clear in the literature that comes with the medicine.

                    There are side effects to EVerything - it is your job as a consumer to educate yourself.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      My vet says any ear med has the risk of loss of hearing. But what are you going to do, not treat the ear infection?

                      If you're that mad at the vet, find another one. Although I'd bet they'd probably do the same thing.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Ear infections themselves can cause loss of hearing for that matter...

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          My guess, if the hearing loss is permanent, there is a case for saying the medication, that causes temporary hearing loss, was not the cause of your dog's deafness, but whatever was causing you to treat it, like an ongoing infection.

                          It will be hard to prove that the medication did, easy to prove that any one of many things could have.

                          Honestly, lawsuits are for valid cases, not maybe it did, maybe not, but lets see if we can get some money or revenge or whatever may motivate the lawsuit, as here.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by saje View Post
                            Your first post here and you dragged up a year-old thread.

                            What are going to sue for? The warning about occasional deafness is quite clear in the literature that comes with the medicine.

                            There are side effects to EVerything - it is your job as a consumer to educate yourself.
                            For your information, there were no instructions in the box. The only instructions I got was the instructions on the label from the doctor as to how many drops and how many times to use it. So, how can I educate myself with no instructions that came inside the box? You tell me....

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Saje,

                              For your information, I received no instructions inside of the box. All I got was a tube of the medication in a box. The only instructions I got was the label the Vet put on the box as to how many drops and how often to use. So, tell AGAIN HOW WAS I TO EDUCATE MYSELF, MR. PHD?

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Originally posted by saje View Post
                                Your first post here and you dragged up a year-old thread.

                                What are going to sue for? The warning about occasional deafness is quite clear in the literature that comes with the medicine.

                                There are side effects to EVerything - it is your job as a consumer to educate yourself.
                                Also, when I called the vet back, he stated that my dogs ear infection wasn't very bad.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  This reply is for Blue? When I called the vet back to tell him about the hearing loss after using Malotic, he admitted my dogs infection wasn't that bad. Furthermore, I called my dogs regular vet back in IN and he is very concerned as to why the Vet ( the one I took my dog to while in AL for a short time ) even put her on Malotic if her infection wasn't that bad. My dogs hearing was fine when I took her to this vet. Besides all this, I didn't take her to the Vet for an ear infection in the first place. Do you work for the company that makes Malotic or are you a Vet?

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by rwhite5789 View Post
                                    Saje,

                                    For your information, I received no instructions inside of the box. All I got was a tube of the medication in a box. The only instructions I got was the label the Vet put on the box as to how many drops and how often to use. So, tell AGAIN HOW WAS I TO EDUCATE MYSELF, MR. PHD?
                                    First off, the sarcasm does you no good at all.

                                    Second, I'm female, no PhD but a lifetime of education on my own.

                                    And how to educate yourself? Well, you could ask the vet for the literature, or you could go home and use the computer you obviously have access to and do a web search. Google pulls up THIS as the second hit.

                                    About halfway down that page you'll find this: (Bold underlining mine)

                                    Warnings:

                                    The use of MalOtic Ointment has been associated with deafness or partial hearing loss in a small number of sensitive dogs (eg. geriatric). The hearing deficit is usually temporary. If hearing or vestibular dysfunction is noted during the course of treatment, discontinue use of MalOtic Ointment immediately and flush the ear canal thoroughly with a non-ototoxic solution. Corticosteroids administered to dogs, rabbits, and rodents during pregnancy have resulted in cleft palate in offspring. Other congenital anomalies including deformed forelegs, phocomelia, and anasarca have been reported in offspring of dogs which received corticosteroids during pregnancy. Clinical and experimental data have demonstrated that corticosteroids administered orally or parenterally to animals may induce the first stage of parturition if used during the last trimester of pregnancy and may precipitate premature parturition followed by dystocia, fetal death, retained placenta and metritis.
                                    I look up everything my vet gives me, I ask questions, I read and I observe. I trust my vet to treat me like an intelligent, rational person and a partner in my animal's care because that's exactly what I am, and he knows it and appreciates it.

                                    I'm sorry your dog had a bad reaction, but just about any medication has some miniscule chance of side effects. Someone has to be that 3%, and it sucks that it was your dog.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      One of my dogs who had an ongoing issue with ear infections ended up deaf. She had gallons of ointments dumped into her ears over her 14 year life and I attribute her deafness to the ear infections, not any medications that were administered.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by rwhite5789 View Post
                                        This reply is for Blue? When I called the vet back to tell him about the hearing loss after using Malotic, he admitted my dogs infection wasn't that bad. Furthermore, I called my dogs regular vet back in IN and he is very concerned as to why the Vet ( the one I took my dog to while in AL for a short time ) even put her on Malotic if her infection wasn't that bad. My dogs hearing was fine when I took her to this vet. Besides all this, I didn't take her to the Vet for an ear infection in the first place. Do you work for the company that makes Malotic or are you a Vet?
                                        First, no, I don't work for any company or am a vet.

                                        Second, you don't have to work for the company selling that or be a vet to understand cause and effect or to have some common sense and use it.

                                        Seriously, it is sad that your dog lost it's hearing.
                                        Is it definitely lost and is it permanent?
                                        You can have that checked by a veterinary specialist, so you know more what you have there.

                                        Basenjis are one of my favorite breeds.
                                        They sure are great clowns, are they.

                                        Comment

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