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Specialist Clutching at straws for any advice - Kidney stones and ovarian cysts with gut adhesion

Adelle

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Will try keep this as short as possible- I'm an experienced, knowledgeable guinea owner however I am now just at a total loss of how I can help my girl. Any similar experiences/ advice welcome!

Poppet is 4.5 years old, and has a history of bladder sludge / bloody urine flares. These are managed with metacam and septrin during flares, and has a low calcium diet with increased fluids and glucosamine based bladder supplements. She has a teaspoon of ss grain free at bedtime - I free fed until a couple weeks ago due to digestive issues with my other sow, however neither ever gorged on pellets.

In December 2019, poppet was diagnosed with ovarian cysts that caused a bit of a mess in her abdomen. She was spayed, but the ovarian cysts had adhered to her guts. Her caecum ruptured during the spay, and had to be fixed with mesh and have her abdomen flushed to prevent sepsis. Somehow... My little girl survived with round the clock care and had no further complications.

By this point she went from 1050g to 850g- I expected her to gain all her weight back, but she never got higher than 930g. She would sit around 880 during a bladder flare, then would go back up with treatment. Poppet has remained on low dose metacam since this time, as anytime I reduced the dose, she lost weight. I assumed this was due to her bladder flaring.

Fast forward to now- I find a large lump protruding from poppets abdomen during cuddles. Her urine became very bloody and sludgey. She was back on septrin and metacam, the urine began to clear up and she gained weight. Today she had her ultrasound with the specialist sonographer- the lump is in fact ovarian cysts... There has been tissue remnants left due to the fact everything was stuck together with adhesions. This has continued to behave like the ovarys, and she now has a large grape sized cyst.

They scanned her kidneys just for completeness. The left one is fine, but shockingly her right one has been completely destroyed and contains a large stone. They suspect this kidney is non functional.

I am in shock, and my heart's breaking for her. Despite the disaster of events that is going on inside her, poppet is popcorning the days away and is bright as a button.

However, I need to try and take so much care with her remaining healthy kidney and try to prevent it also forming any stones, as this will ultimately end her life. I don't know much this ovarian tissue is impacting her inability to gain back her lost weight post spay, as it will be causing her hormone levels to still be elevated. Normally I'd just have this surgically removed, but i don't want to put her one working kidney through anaesthetic. Kidney removal was mentioned, which I quickly refused- my dainty, shy little girlie would most certainly not cope with that.


She was x-rayed pre spay and had no stones- so it's hard to know wether the kidney or ovarian tissue is more relevant to this. She loses weight when reducing metacam, suggesting she needs this for pain relief. Metacam is contraindicated with kidneys however it is keeping her well and that is my main concern.

Her case has been sent to both Edinburgh and London exotics departments for further advice. I've also contacted a more herbal orientated exotics vet in my area for advice on herbal remedies as far as further stone formation goes. She is a little bomb waiting to go off right now, and I'm scared to do/give her anything without consulting someone knowledgeable.

Poppet was from a hoarding situation, is smaller than average, has taken 4.5 years so stop being feral and has a strange congenital eye issue which causes bone formation- I suspect she is inbred and did expect for her to have complications in life.

I'm pulling out all the stops I can possibly think of at the minute... But I'm hoping anyone with experiences of kidney stones can share .. I've never had a stone piggy, so the fact this is so drastic has been a shock. I don't expect any advice on the ovarian issue, as ovarian cysts in a neutered sow isn't exactly common!

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sport_billy

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:( Oh God Adelle I am so sorry to read this. I have no advice sorry, Tagging in @Abi_nurse for sure on this in case she has any experience of it in her vets

Hugs to you and also lots of love to little Poppet x
 

Adelle

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:( Oh God Adelle I am so sorry to read this. I have no advice sorry, Tagging in @Abi_nurse for sure on this in case she has any experience of it in her vets

Hugs to you and also lots of love to little Poppet x
Thank you, I'm devastated for her :(
 

VickiA

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I’m so sorry @Adelle. Not had any piggies with kidney stones, so can’t offer any help just support. As for ovarian cysts, I know from experience that if any ovarian tissue remains then there is always a risk that cysts can develop, so poor love having that going on as well as the trouble with her kidney. She’s such a cutie.
 

Wiebke

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BIG HUGS

I am very sorry - poor Poppy has definitely drawn one of the shorter straws! :(

Kidney stones in guinea pigs are unfortunately right at the limit or beyond in terms of current veterinary ability.
I am very sorry but the technical possibilities and the chances of a successful operation are beyond me.

My Iola had massive ovarian cysts, one of which had caused gut adhesion and couldn't be completely removed. I was warned that the remaining piece could grow back. It had a little but it was not the main reason why I had to make the decision to let her go a year later although a kidney going massively wrong was one of the main factors. But then Iola was 6 1/2 at the time and her quality of life was not something we could give her back for more than a matter of just days with no guarantees that the big medication cocktail she would have needed would have worked.

I am always relieved when any adoptees of mine from a comparable background live to see their 4th birthday. I also re-set the clock to zero with any piggy coming through a life threatening illness or emergency operation. Any extra time with them is a bonus, whether that is a few weeks, months or another 5 years. It helps me to cope better when things don't quite run smoothly.
 

Adelle

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I’m so sorry @Adelle. Not had any piggies with kidney stones, so can’t offer any help just support. As for ovarian cysts, I know from experience that if any ovarian tissue remains then there is always a risk that cysts can develop, so poor love having that going on as well as the trouble with her kidney. She’s such a cutie.
Our usual vet is furloughed , but she's been kind to always help me via message despite not actually working. She's suggested draining that large cystic area just with some local on her skin, as anaesthetic would be too risky. But we won't be doing anything about that, if at all, until she's back. She's just a wee soul and is being so brave.
 

Adelle

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BIG HUGS

I am very sorry - poor Poppy has definitely drawn one of the shorter straws! :(

Kidney stones in guinea pigs are unfortunately right at the limit or beyond in terms of current veterinary ability.
I am very sorry but the technical possibilities and the chances of a successful operation are beyond me.

My Iola had massive ovarian cysts, one of which had caused gut adhesion and couldn't be completely removed. I was warned that the remaining piece could grow back. It had a little but it was not the main reason why I had to make the decision to let her go a year later although a kidney going massively wrong was one of the main factors. But then Iola was 6 1/2 at the time and her quality of life was not something we could give her back for more than a matter of just days with no guarantees that the big medication cocktail she would have needed would have worked.

I am always relieved when any adoptees of mine from a comparable background live to see their 4th birthday. I also re-set the clock to zero with any piggy coming through a life threatening illness or emergency operation. Any extra time with them is a bonus, whether that is a few weeks, months or another 5 years. It helps me to cope better when things don't quite run smoothly.
I always appreciate my girls, but I agree that I will do moreso after today. She's being very brave and wouldn't know anything was wrong with her bless her
 

Merab's Slave

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I can’t offer any advice but I want to offer support and let you know that I am holding you in my heart.
 

Adelle

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I can’t offer any advice but I want to offer support and let you know that I am holding you in my heart.
Thank you. I really am clutching at straws.. I don't think Edinburgh vet school, London exotics or this herbal vet will be able to do anything. If only we had a magic wand. I just need to do my best and hope for the best, however grim the outlook may seem.
 

Eriathwen

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I'm so sorry :( I'm afraid I also don't have anything to offer in the way of help, just support. She does sound slightly similar to my Ebony who was spayed in April? May? She has digestive issues on and off that I believed to be from adhesions from the cysts, but they have continued, albeit only once since her surgery. She also has IC and coincidentally, the calcium formations in one eye (osseous metaplasia) and I'm now wondering if it's worth her having another scan to check her kidneys!
 

Adelle

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I'm so sorry :( I'm afraid I also don't have anything to offer in the way of help, just support. She does sound slightly similar to my Ebony who was spayed in April? May? She has digestive issues on and off that I believed to be from adhesions from the cysts, but they have continued, albeit only once since her surgery. She also has IC and coincidentally, the calcium formations in one eye (osseous metaplasia) and I'm now wondering if it's worth her having another scan to check her kidneys!
Sorry to hear you're having trouble too. Poppet has had her eye issue for a few years now and it hasn't changed or advanced in that time until literally this week when I noticed a new white area developing. The whole calcium absorption/filtering system is so complicated in guinea pigs and I don't think anyone will ever truelly know how it works 100%. I kind of always knew poppet wouldnt go to 8.5/9 that old fudge and crunchie managed despite age onset heart failure. I'm pretty certain she's inbred, and when all the eye issues etc started it just confirmed it. I just feel like she's still so young at only 4.5 , but then life doesn't work like that does it ! :(
 

flintstones

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My only suggestion would be Tramadol, I have had two pigs both with Kidney damage, have this prescribed. Penfold you may remember his Kidneys where chalked full of stones and Patrick also had a kidney stone, both where prescribed Tramadol. This was palliative care, to give them 'quality' of life, as a pain reliever this worked miracles. Patrick showed his pain, and Tramadol was the medication that I found helped and gave him 'quality'. Penfold never did make noise, it's weird how vocal some pigs are and others not so much. Patrick was fortunate that his stone made its way to the ureter and the vet was able to remove this, due to the location. The reason for the Tramadol was I believe is due to it being kinder on the kidneys.

Your wee girlie, seems like a real fighter. It's good she has you to look after her. I hope you find a solution that works for her.
 

Adelle

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My only suggestion would be Tramadol, I have had two pigs both with Kidney damage, have this prescribed. Penfold you may remember his Kidneys where chalked full of stones and Patrick also had a kidney stone, both where prescribed Tramadol. This was palliative care, to give them 'quality' of life, as a pain reliever this worked miracles. Patrick showed his pain, and Tramadol was the medication that I found helped and gave him 'quality'. Penfold never did make noise, it's weird how vocal some pigs are and others not so much. Patrick was fortunate that his stone made its way to the ureter and the vet was able to remove this, due to the location. The reason for the Tramadol was I believe is due to it being kinder on the kidneys.

Your wee girlie, seems like a real fighter. It's good she has you to look after her. I hope you find a solution that works for her.
Thank you, I remember penfold well and he came to my mind as soon as the news sank in. I wasn't sure if you where still on the forum, I hope you're well!

I'm thinking about the whole metacam/tramadol situation. Fudge and crunchie both used then together for their arthritis so I know how good it can be for pain relief. It's just the worry of her bladder lining flaring without the metacam, as this would cause her further discomfort. It is something I am thinking about though, as any reduction in the metacam will only be a good thing for her kidneys if I can provide alternative pain relief.

Did u manage to control penfolds stones with anything i.e diet or supplements ? Poppets kidney is totally destroyed, so even if by some miracle the stone broke down, it wouldn't actually help her. But I need to keep this left kidney stone free or else I will ultimately lose her. I keep thinking about how this is going to pan out, and I just can't bear the thought of her ever suffering or slowly declining with pain. I'm a pro at hearts, and I know what to expect.. but I am totally out of my depth here !
 

flintstones

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To be honest we didn't try and control them as there was so many and if I remember rightly they were not limited to just the Kidney and both kidneys where affected. His care was palliative, and he was just spoiled in the end with whatever he wanted as the damage was to severe.

Stones, I have came up against a few times now, Max I lost last night on the operating table to a 'stone'. I understand the frustration with these complications and matters are made worse when the kidneys are involved. Over the years I have used Cytease for Bladder inflammation, I also used Steroid infections to help Patrick, although I can't say I had any real success with it. The tramadol was the best recommendation I ever had from a vet who used it on dogs all the time. I have found with my girls, that when they inflammation Septrin/metacam resolves this, I wonder if Septrin on its own would work?

What did help, and I genuinely believe it did for Patrick encouraging water intake, as once P had his stone removed. He had an extra 6 months, I would feed him additional fluids every day, right up until he would no longer take it and at the point I decided forcing him wasn't fair, sure enough he went on to develop another stone this time it was in the bladder, this developed after he decided the water wasn't for him. He took a ridiculous amount of water in the beginning. I think I use to aim for minimum 30 mls. We did try to operate however given his history, we decided to do a kidney test first and unfortunately his kidneys were truly shot, and we made the decision he would not cope with another Operation, and it wasn't fair.

I know people speak about pellets, and I genuinely believe Pellets do not help and contribute to stones. You can get grain free, do I know if they work? This is the belief. Perhaps diet to can help avoiding high calcium foods, however again I don't know there is a clear yes this will work.
 

Adelle

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To be honest we didn't try and control them as there was so many and if I remember rightly they were not limited to just the Kidney and both kidneys where affected. His care was palliative, and he was just spoiled in the end with whatever he wanted as the damage was to severe.

Stones, I have came up against a few times now, Max I lost last night on the operating table to a 'stone'. I understand the frustration with these complications and matters are made worse when the kidneys are involved. Over the years I have used Cytease for Bladder inflammation, I also used Steroid infections to help Patrick, although I can't say I had any real success with it. The tramadol was the best recommendation I ever had from a vet who used it on dogs all the time. I have found with my girls, that when they inflammation Septrin/metacam resolves this, I wonder if Septrin on its own would work?

What did help, and I genuinely believe it did for Patrick encouraging water intake, as once P had his stone removed. He had an extra 6 months, I would feed him additional fluids every day, right up until he would no longer take it and at the point I decided forcing him wasn't fair, sure enough he went on to develop another stone this time it was in the bladder, this developed after he decided the water wasn't for him. He took a ridiculous amount of water in the beginning. I think I use to aim for minimum 30 mls. We did try to operate however given his history, we decided to do a kidney test first and unfortunately his kidneys were truly shot, and we made the decision he would not cope with another Operation, and it wasn't fair.

I know people speak about pellets, and I genuinely believe Pellets do not help and contribute to stones. You can get grain free, do I know if they work? This is the belief. Perhaps diet to can help avoiding high calcium foods, however again I don't know there is a clear yes this will work.
Thank you for all the info, I'm sorry to hear you lost your max. Stones are terrible things.

Poppet has been on only a teaspoon of pellets at bedtime for a few weeks now. Rowan is now completely off pellets due to digestive and bladder issues and is so much better off - no more vet trips or gut stimulants. Poppet has been much less sludgey with just the teaspoon of pellets, I didn't give her any at all last night as I'm deciding wether to stop All together. Veg wise she only gets a tiny sprig of coriander, a good chunk of cucumber for water and some bell pepper, all twice a day. Anytime she has lettuce, celery, carrot, cabbage , green beans or god forbid any leafy greens then she gets really sludgey. I now suspect this is due to only having the one kidney, so I avoid these foods totally as I don't want to put extra strain on the remaining healthy one. Because her veg is so limited I worry about her recieving all the nutrients she needs, as she rarely eats the pepper. I've now got her on an oxbow multivitamin and the vit c tab. Not sure if that's even the right thing to do, but if she's not having pellets and super limited veg, I can't expect her to get everything she needs from hay. It's a minefield.

Both my girls have their veg in a bowl of water so I'm happy she receives enough fluid x
 

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Aw, thinking of you, you must be gutted I so sorry about her diagnosis, Poppet looks so bright :wub:
 

flintstones

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Aw bless her, it's good she is so happy as the most important thing is she has quality and given that video she definitely does!

What was the treat, she got given is that the vitamin C tablet (oxbow) as I think I had tried these previously and my piggies didn't agree with poppet opinion. 🤣

Good to know it's not bothering her although it's a big concern for us humans, as we want them to have the best life ❤.
 
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