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Ivermectin: Goes Worse Before Getting Better?

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Jenwah

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Hello,

Hoping soon I wont need to post in this area for a long while but currently, I feel I am losing a battle with Birt, and could do with some positivity.

I treated him with Ivermectin about 9 days ago - I thought Birt was getting better as I let him out to run around a few days ago and I've never seen him so happy before, running around, he did a little popcorn which I've not seen him do yet. Eating veg and fruit and showing interest.

But now, it's like I'm back to where I started, if not worse. He's so sad looking, he doesnt really like to be picked up, he isnt curious like Gertrude is, he sits in his bed all day, he gets up and looks like he is falling asleep sitting up. I have tried to give him toys to play with / runs to go through / different food etc but I dont know what to do.

Ive spoken to my vet who said to give him another dose of Ivermectin - it's been posted Friday so I'm hoping I'll get this tomorrow.

I took a photo of Birt yesterday showing him asleep in his cage, and can see a "V" shape on his back, but today, it looks terrible. So much worse.

I think I read on here that it goes worse before it gets better once treating with Ivermectic - is this true or have I dreamt that? After I've treated him his course of Iver, is there any moisturiser I can put on his skin - it just looks so dry.

Thank you for any help - sorry I sound negative in this post. Makes me upset seeing an animal so down.

Yesterday's skin:


Today's skin:
 

7squeakers.

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:(Really sorry to hear that poor Birt is feeling so bad.:soz: Sending healing vibes. Sorry, I can't help with the Invermectin. Wiebke will know all about that.
I do know that two of my past piggies (sisters, both white like Birt) both developed a bald "V" on their backs just like Birt. My vet just said it was "wear and tear"! :doh: This bald patch developed in their second summer and never really went away. (I have since learnt that it can be caused by stress.) But apart from that, they were completely healthy.
Best of luck with Birt.
 

Wiebke

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I am so very sorry. You can certainly try a second round; would your vet consider injected ivermectin (panomec) as it is the most effective way of giving ivermectin? Generally, the worst should be over about 48 hours after the first dose and any discomfort should be over after the second round. The third round is only to make sure that catch any straggling emerging eggs. In some persistent or advanced cases, a fourth round may be needed.

There are some things that you and your vet may consider:
a) The V shape with mange mites is typically the other way round.
b) Mange mites have started to show signs of adapting to ivermectin and there have been first instances of them becoming immune to ivermectin; revolution would be an alternative treatment if the current one is not working as it has a different active ingredient. What product are you using?
c) Has your vet considered that it could be something other than mites, like fungal (not ringworm, so it is harder to diagnose because labs are usually only testing for ringworm, but not other forms of fungal)?

@helen105281
 

biscandmatt

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doses need to be given every 10days - two weeks for 2-3 times before the mites and eggs will be gone. the vet should beable to advise which timescale is best and whether spot on or injections would be better. one dose is never enough as the new eggs will hatch after about the ten day mark, so this is probably why he seemed worse at that stage.

there is always bathing that can soothe the skin, although care must be taken if the skin is broken, and when using with ivermectin (48hrs between shampoo and doses)

did the vet do a skin scraping when you went for the initial appointment? sometimes the mites can be seen. sometimes not, but treatment can still be given based on symptoms. did they mention the possibility of it being fungal instead? just because they can look similar sometimes. although i think the classic 'v' shape is typical of mites.

maybe use the vet locator to find an exotics/guinea savvy vet if yours isn't. :)
 

Jenwah

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Thanks 7squeakers, hoping your positive vibes help him :)

Wiebke, thanks for your reply, I can ask him about the oral Ivermectin. The one he give me is Ivecmectin, but the one that I squirt on the back of his neck. Ahh, I must have dreamt that up then about it all gets worse before getting better.
I didnt know that about Ivermectin and mites becoming immune, why can't they all just disappear into thin air. I will also ask about Revolution.

My vet said he can see he has skin problems and the best thing is to treat them first with the suspicion that it's mites.

He did pick up the first time with it, but now he's back to where he was, its like we've taken 3 steps back.

Biscandmatt, thank you as well for your reply - my vet thinks that he was treated in pets at home but not completely as he did take skin scratch and took fur samples too - he said he couldnt see any live mites under the microscope but could see a large scale of eggs, he said these may not be alive but better to treat them now. The Pets at Home vet didnt do a thing to test his skin. The vet i go to is brilliant but I dont think is cavvy savvy, I will try to locate another one and see if they can help me further.

Thanks again everyone. I will keep treating Birt with Ivermectin and forward these questions to him also.

I hate Pets at Home.
 

Pebble

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It can get worse before it gets better...especially given what your vet said about seeing so many eggs 9 days ago.
Ivermectin can't kill the eggs - it can only kill the mites once they have hatched which can happen anytime between 2 and 14days.

Have a read of this thread -
https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/2-more-dying-piggies.122408/

I have tried to be as informative as i can in it about the treatment given to two very seriously affected piggies with mange mites and secondary fungal problems. Obviously your piggie is in no way as badly affected as these girls - but hopefully it will help you discuss next steps with your vet.
x
 

helen105281

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I agree with investigating fungal too, there is a actually a fungal issue called broken back that can look similar to mange mites as it causes a v.
 

Jenwah

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Thanks Pebble, I'll have a good read of the post youve posted.

Also thankyou Helen105281, I couldnt find a lot on about broken back, I did find a photo of a guinea pig which looks a lot like Birt. And also, is it "barbering?" where they just barber themselves a bit too much and make themselves bald?

I was wondering if I could be directed in the right direction with which fungal treatment to ask my vet for - he will probably know but just so I can ask him myself.

Again, always grateful for the help I get from you guys :D
 

Wiebke

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Thanks Pebble, I'll have a good read of the post youve posted.

Also thankyou Helen105281, I couldnt find a lot on about broken back, I did find a photo of a guinea pig which looks a lot like Birt. And also, is it "barbering?" where they just barber themselves a bit too much and make themselves bald?

I was wondering if I could be directed in the right direction with which fungal treatment to ask my vet for - he will probably know but just so I can ask him myself.

Again, always grateful for the help I get from you guys :D
I would assume that your vet will want to continue to treat for mange mites; it is important that any course of ivermectin is properly finished. I
n view of the discomfort, considering switching to panomec (ivermectin) injections and considering an oral course of itrafungol of your vet thinks that fungal could be in play would be easiest on the skin.

The best topical treatment for fungal is currently imaverol. It is suitable for piggies of all ages, but your vet will have to consider whether a dip is too much under the circumstances.
 

Pebble

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I would only resort to oral antifungals if vet deemed it absolutely necessary because of the risk of liver damage.
Most fungal skin issues associated with mites can be treated effectively with either bathing in something like the recently launched F10 shampoo or alternatively bathing with a baby shampoo first, rinsing off and then syringing on imaverol dip (which is left on the guinea pig, not rinsed off)
x.
 

Pebble

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PS if the piggie is suffering too much with mange mites and at risk of fitting - you can use appropriately diluted warm F10 disinfectant (antifungal and antibacterial - helps with open wounds too) and spray onto the coat/skin to avoid handling.
x
 
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