blocked third time need opinion asap

reba

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hi here at e vet for third time in 6 months. Need opinions on prognosis ASAP. Thanks so mich
 

stephanietx

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Does your kitty have crystals? What are you feeding? Is your kitty on an all wet diet? There's a lot you can do to help your kitty.
 
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reba

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Hi I'm home. As I was waiting for them to tell me whether he was blocked, I was preparing to make the decision to put him to sleep if he was. But then I was reading and the prognosis was pretty good, then they told me the surgeon could operate on him tomorrow. Then the surgeon called back and said they should add a $1,300 charge to the estimate "just in case" he had to do the surgery after 5 PM.

Really, I can see that if you say you get the surgeon out of bed and come operate at 2 a.m., but his guy has to stay an extra hour and it's a 20% surcharge.

I have insurance, most people don't
 

stephanietx

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Is he still at the ER vet? Any chance your regular vet can do the surgery tomorrow?
 
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reba

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He's still there. I can call tomorrow and cancel. I will talk to my vets first thing (hopefully.)

You know I expressed what I consider mild shock and a request for clarification of the late charge and the woman had to call back and tell them "she's not happy with the late charge." That speaks to the fact that they've lost sight of how out of wack this is with reality.

Oh and this being the premier speciality clinic in the area I thought I would be getting a highly credentialed surgeon. This guy went to a mediocre undergrad college and a foreign vet school. Does it mean he's stupid, no, but at these prices people deserve a vet credentialed at a prestigious US school and won a competitive placement for their internships. This guy worked at VCA, the Walmart of veterinary conglomerates.
 

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A $1'300 surcharge sounds like price gouging,could be worth a phone call to the Better business bureau. I had a horrible experience with an emergency vet clinic with my dog, they seem to be money motivated, your pet is a secondary concern. Good luck with your cat!
 
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reba

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Latest: They recatherized him at 5 am and had to use a narrow catheter Because he hadn’t peed for 12 hours after surgery. A few hours later he pulled that out. At that point I told the I was going to put him to sleep. They told me they thought it was worth trying to ut a larger catheter in and see if that worked. I said no. She said, well why don’t you come and see him if you think we should put him down we will, if not we’ll use the sedation he’s under to reinsert catheter.

They brought him in all wrapped up in a blanket and he was very alert and plugged into the world. Looked out the window and watched things while I was holding him. So I decided to let them proceed. Now we’ll just have to see how long it is before we make another difficult decision.
 

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Is there another vet you can go to for a second opinion?
 
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reba

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I don’t think there is controversy about how to proceed - I think there’s only time to see how it plays out. I would’ve felt more confident in the other surgeon, but that would’ve involved moving him to a different facility 40 minutes away.
 
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reba

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And so the rollercoaster begins. Here’s my timeline. Am including the emotional stuff because, well, that’s part of it.

Brought cat in for third block, tell me I’m lucky surgeon can fit him in for PU tomorrow - Great

Signing estimate, and at the last minute surgeon calls saying that have to add 1,100 charge to if surgery runs after 5 PM
Reg flag that he’s more focused on

Find a more qualified surgeon at another facility, prepare to move him because I haven’t heard from first surgeon. Plus I don’t trust them because of the leave-no-stone-unturned fee schedule.

Just then get call speak to surgeon decide on balance not to move him he has operation they assure me it will start between 2 and 4 (so no late fee I think).

Go home wait for call 4 goes by, then 5, then 6, Spend 45 minutes composing email about the surgeon’s lie-by-ommission and the result. I hit send just as the phone rings.

7 surgeon calls. Operation went well he says. I have a brief and perfunctory discussion with him.

5 AM wake up to phone ringing asking if they can catheterize him because he’s not peeing - say OK. (Another $300)

2 PM call to see how he’s doing and am told he has ripped catheter out,

Call clinic and tell them to I am planning on putting him to sleep will be there with family in 40 minutes

Vet doesn’t push but feels it is too soon for this (this is the staff vet, not the surgeon.)

We come to clinic and they bring him in room in blanket. He looks good and is alert (though sedated)

I decide to go forward with having him catheterized and decide I will see if any more complications

That’s the latest. I’ll try and keep posting about this whole journey as other people’s posts have really helped me.
 
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msb88

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Mine had two PU surgeries and ripped out EIGHT catheters. Ended up having to bandage all four legs to keep the cather in for 3 weeks, this is after the first emergency catherization. we're trying to make it to monday with a horrible fever and infection and are around 1800 in the hole. It's been a real ride, and I feel you. If you keep having the issues with the catheter, maybe suggest the bandaging?
 

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My cat had PU surgery a couple of months ago. I also used a hospital that probably wouldn't have been my first choice, but as you've learned you don't get a long time to mull these things over when your cat has a potentially life-threatening blockage.

As it happens, the surgery went OK and things have been better so far, knock on wood. And although at the time I was willing to wait before trying the surgery, I realize now it was probably inevitable given the issues he's had. Best of luck to you, and please keep us posted.
 
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reba

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Mine had two PU surgeries and ripped out EIGHT catheters. Ended up having to bandage all four legs to keep the cather in for 3 weeks, this is after the first emergency catherization. we're trying to make it to monday with a horrible fever and infection and are around 1800 in the hole. It's been a real ride, and I feel you. If you keep having the issues with the catheter, maybe suggest the bandaging?
I have to be honest with you and I never know how to approach this with people and perhaps I should do so in a direct message - Im not and I’m willing to take the heat for it, but here goes.

A typical PU surgery costs $3,000, moreover your cat does not look as though he is hospitalized, he does look like he is suffering terribly. I spoke with the surgeon today and he said the most he would keep the catheter in is 7 days. I cannot think of a credible facility who would keep a catheter in for that length of time. Moreover, the reason they do the surgery after the third time is because the re-catherization causes more and more damage. 8 times is alarming, 8 times is torture, 8 times is pretty much guaranteeing the cat will die from sepsis, he clearly is not in a sterile environment.

This isn’t about the try - it’s about adulting - which means having coping mechanisms to withstand the very real pain of sparing our animals unnecessary pain.

I’m sorry to be so blunt everyone, but I just got back from the hospital where my cat is being fluids and pain meds through a sterile IV. He is surrounded by nurses who check him every hour. This cat has no IV, his paws are bandaged - it is simply one of the most upsetting pictures I have ever seen.
 
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reba

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My cat is doing well - he is bright and meowing at me when I walked in. He has a large cage in a special cat area at the hospital so he is not in with the dogs. His catheter is still in, but doesn’t seem to be bothering him much. He rolls on his side and makes biscuits while I pet him and you can stick your nose in his cone for head butts. Keep in mind this is a cat they had to sedate to even examine during the first two days he was hospitalized.

The real test will be when they take the catheter out and see if he gets strichters (sorry about the spelling). Fingers crossed that works out. All I can say for now I am so relieved to see him feeling so much better.
 

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Just read through all this, I am glad he seems to be doing ok. Crazy how often males get blocked. We see it so much at the current and previous clinics I have worked at. I am now so terrified to give a male cat dry food period at this point. I can't imagine going through all that. Please continue to keep us posted! Hope thinks keep going well.
 
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reba

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The lack of research is astounding. The way they’ve largely cured childhood cancer is by collecting data from every patient in the country (because obviously you can’t divide the kids into treatment/control groups.). They could do the same with cats to figure out the primary cause and which treatments are most effective. I’ve never given my cats dry food until this one got IBD and even then it was limited ingredient royal canin rabbit. So it’s not just the cheap stuff that’s the factor.

Anyway, we all have our dreams of what we’d do if we were rich, studying this is mine.
 
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