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Our senior schnoodle was on Rimadyl for relief of pain due…

Our senior schnoodle was on...
Our senior schnoodle was on Rimadyl for relief of pain due to arthritis/hind end weakness. Rimadyl was started in April ... his NSAID panel in early July showed an elevate ALT level of 574 and an AST level of 130. We immediately stopped Rimadyl ... seeing no change in his discomfort level. Vet is repeating blood work next week to check on liver enzyme levels. My question is, could the Rimadyl alone be the reason for the rapid rise in both levels ?? ... or is that unlikely ?? He is also suffering from confusion/doggie dementia, hind end weakness and general behavioral changes. No increased thirst and still very, very hungry. Your thoughts please !!
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Answered in 2 minutes by:
7/31/2017
Sarah Snow
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 537
Experience: Veterinarian at The Vet Clinic East
Verified

Hello,

I am Dr. Snow, and I can try to help you with Duffy. The Rimadyl could be the cause of the changes, but its not uncommon to see those changes in an older dog that's not on any medications.

Did Duffy have any bloodwork before starting the Rimadyl?

Other causes of the elevated values could be early liver disease, liver neoplasia (cancer), or just benign growths on the liver causing elevations in the enzymes.

Is he on any other medications?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Just 1/2 Trazadone during the evening to calm him from night anxiety and confusion. That was started last March. It does help calm him at night and help him to sleep.
Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Oops, no he did NOT have bloodwork immediately before starting Rimadyl but has had it earlier in the year. Don't remember there being any abnormalities.
Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Dr. Snow, I was hoping you could give me some idea of the probability of the Rimadyl causing Duffy's elevated liver panel numbers. I had read about other causes but was unsure of the "likelihood" of Rimadyl being at the root of this scary issue.
I totally understand! I just wanted to make sure I have all the info and make sure you get as much information as needed.I think it's very likely due to the Rimadyl, but obviously I can't say for sure.
How long will he have been off the Rimadyl when you have his bloodwork rechecked?
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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Duffy has been off Rimadyl for a little over one month now. Blood work will be repeated next week. Hopeful it will come back improved. But the waiting has been tough ... I don't want him suffering and since he has other issues going on, it's tough to tell.

Ok, since he's been off of it for a month, if its solely due to the Rimadyl, the levels should decrease significantly. If they don't, there are definitely some more tests we can do to get to the bottom of it. If his levels are still elevated, your veterinarian will probably want to do some imagine (x rays or ultrasound) of the liver.

In the meantime, there are some over the counter liver support supplements we could try if you're interested!

Sarah Snow
Category: Dog Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 537
Experience: Veterinarian at The Vet Clinic East
Verified
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Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about Duffy. How is everything going?
Sarah Snow
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When is your appointment for the recheck bloodwork?

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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Hi Dr. Snow ...
Duffy is doing ok ... continued hind end weakness/collapse. Very anxious and frequent panting. Blood re-check is scheduled for next Thursday, one week from today. Have no idea what to expect. I've read on the internet that Rimadyl can cause rapid, serious liver issues ... yet our Vet, whom we have great respect for, says it's very unusual for a dog to react this quickly. He has hundreds of dogs on Rimadyl in his practice and sees very few side effects. I wish I had more knowledge or insight into what's going on with our little guy. Very frustrating.
Thank you for asking about Duffy.
I agree with your vet. We have lots of dogs on Rimadyl with wet few side effects. It is so frustrating not to have an answer. Rechecking the bloodwork will give us a direction to go at least.I'm the meantime, have you discussed other treatment options with your vet for his back end issues? Adequan and gabapentin are some options while we wait on liver tests. Acupuncture could also help if you have interest in a holistic approach.
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Customer reply replied 11 months ago
Our vet did prescribe gabapentin when we discontinued the Rimadyl but I was afraid to introduce another drug until we repeated the blood work. Just being cautious not wanting to muddy the waters ... he is soooo anxious and panting. His primary focus throughout the day is wanting to eat ... constantly "begging" to be fed or receive a treat. I have started feeding him 3 times a day just to ease his anxiety - splitting his 2 half cup feedings into 3 feedings. He then follows me around wanting more !! He is not drinking excessively ... in fact I would say he does not drink much at all. It's a puzzle.

Ok, I understand.

You could try some D.A.P.(Adaptil) for the anxiety - its a pheramone - comes in a collar or a plug in.

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