Friday, April 22, 2005

Feeling Much Better

Here are some pictures of Isabella taken since she came home from the hospital. As you can see, she's looking bright and active, better than ever.

Playing with her favorite mouse...

And a slippered foot, another favorite target...

I'd like to send out a special Thank You to Dr. Kathy Rausch at the Animal Emergency Clinic in St. Paul for the care she gave to Isabella over the weekend. When we brought the kitten in on Saturday, it appeared to the staff at the clinic that Izzy may have ingested a poison, but none of the tests revealed a cause for her symptoms and we didn't know how she might have got into any toxic chemicals, either. We were told that otherwise she might have a neurological problem that was shutting down her system, which we had our own reasons not to believe but some of the staff felt fairly confident that it explained her symptoms.

It would have been easy to accept that as the most likely diagnosis, just try to keep her comfortable, and monitor her condition until Monday morning when they could have passed her on to our regular vet to run more tests and figure out what to do with the case. Honestly, I had the impression that some of the staff would have felt satisfied with that plan. But Dr. Rausch on the overnight shift last Sunday/Monday kept thinking about the problem, looking into reference books to test her brainstorm theories, until she finally gave us a call at 4:30 Monday morning to tell us about her idea that Izzy could be ill because of a blood circulation problem with her liver. It was a tricky diagnosis because a direct confirmation wouldn't show up on the tests available at the clinic, so it wasn't a sure answer, but the pieces fit in a way that made sense. She recommended taking Isabella straight to the U of M that morning for an ultrasound and immediate specialized treatment, and later the tests at the University showed that her diagnosis was right.

Isabella is alive today, and given a successful surgery she should have many years ahead of her, because Dr. Rausch wasn't satisfied with the easy probable guess. She went above and beyond the call to find a solution that better fit the evidence she had onhand, and she took the time to engage us in thoughtful conversations about Izzy's condition and what could be done, and for all she did we are deeply grateful.


At 4/24/2005 11:15 AM, Blogger Batgirl said...

Bless her. And Izzy, too.

At 4/25/2005 4:28 AM, Anonymous Kristi said...

Izzy has such pretty eyes. I'm sure she appreciates that you didn't embarrass her by publishing photos of her shaved tummy on the internet.

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