Saturday, May 30, 2009

More bad news

Ugh. I am hating writing this post, but this is The Kaesea Report and there is news to report on Kaesea...

This morning at around 2:30am, we awoke to the sounds of Kaesea vomiting. This is the sound we have been dreading for weeks. The Big Vomit is back. This whole thing started with unexplained vomiting [of enormous quantities] and we have never really come up with a rock-solid answer for why that was happening. Along the way, we've found things wrong with him (hiatal hernia, intestinal cancer) that may explain it, so we've been hoping that that is what it was.

It's obviously not the hernia, since that is fixed now. And it may still be the cancer, although he's been on chemo for that for a month now which, really, should be making some difference. So we're kind of back to square one. SO frustrating!

I took him to the vet since I was worried about dehydration (the "lake" of vomit that Kaesea produced was about 2x1 feet in area. It's a lot.) We had a long talk about being back to square one and she suggested that we do the same battery of tests on Kaesea that we had done when he first came in. He's a different cat now from what he was then -- with the weight loss, anemia, and generally poor health -- that a new set of tests may give us more information.

So she took a bunch of blood that we'll get back tomorrow or Monday and then we had an ultrasound.

And we found something new on the ultrasound: pancreatitis. It's difficult to say what caused it and it's difficult to say how to cure it. Great. It could be the Prednisone that Kaesea has been on for the past month, or it could be a bacterial infection. Or it could be something else entirely.

But it would explain the inappetence, which is at least an answer to the question, "Why is the cat not eating?"

So what do we do now? Well, of course this happened on the weekend, so we had to go to the emergency vet. So we've got a sort of "band aid" on Kaesea for the weekend until we can see his oncologist on Monday. The band aid consists of:
- reducing the Predisone dose (we cannot just pull him off of it entirely, as much as I would like to)
- antibiotics (in case it was caused by a bacterial infection)
- pain killers (we know the pancreas is painful)
- subcutaneous fluids (for the dehydration) (side note: administering this is a fresh new hell. I have been giving Kaesea shots with very tiny needles for a couple of weeks now, but this thing is like a sharpened garden hose. I hate poking the cat!)
- new anti-nausea drugs (since pancreatitis causes nausea)

I'm not sure what Monday will bring. Kaesea is on a whole pharmacy of drugs right now, which I hate. His appetite has increased dramatically today, which is terrific, but I think the pain killer is making him act weird, which is upsetting. His doctor will hopefully have more insight on all of this, but, to me, it does not seem possible to treat both the pancreatitis and the cancer successfully. Since we know the pancreatitis is painful, we will definitely do our best to treat that. As for the cancer... Yeah. If the treatment and the disease are both going to hurt him, I'd rather leave off of the pills and keep him happy.

Of course, this brings up all of the usual "quality of life" questions once again. For the past few weeks, Kaesea has been in really good spirits. Purring, playing with toys, kneading with his paws, grooming himself, hopping up to greet me, etc. I could confidently say that his quality of life has been good. But today? He's been pretty low today. And I don't like to see him low. So the Difficult Decision may be looming more closely on our horizon again. Again, we will find out more on Monday.

Thanks to everyone who has been reading this blog and asking about Kaesea. I hope you're still reading this incredibly long post and you see this note. Your kindness and caring throughout this has been immeasurably helpful. I will try my best to keep up with the Daily Kaesea photos, as I think we all need a dose of cuteness to wash down this new and bitter pill.

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