Saturday, July 19, 2008

Q and A


This posting is to address the questions posed by Texas. FIP (Feline Infectious Peritonitis) and Distemper (Panlukopenia) are two separate diseases. Panlukopenia is a virus found in felines, which is similar to the Parvo virus found in dogs. FIP on the other hand is a mutated from of the coronavirus. Most cats will come into contact sometime in their lifetime with the coronavirus, however most strains of this virus never mutate into FIP and for the most part are harmless. When a strand of the coronavirus does mutate into FIP, it is almost always, if not always a death sentance, since their is no known cure for the disease, and the current drugs used to treat the disease only offer limited support. There is a vaccination against Panlukopenia. Unfortunately however, un-vaccinated animals, mostly ferals, as in the case of Moki, who come into contact with panlukopenia have a mortality rate 60-90%. For more information about each of these diseases, click on the two links above.

Now in regards to the Cerebeller Hypoplasia. The doctor who mentioned the flag pole tail being a sign of Cerebellar Hypoplasia was a regular practitioner, who we where seeing prior to working with Moki's current neurologist. It is important to note, that Cerebeller Hypoplasia is not a common condition, and regular practitioners do not treat this particular disorder very often in their careers. With that said, Cerebeller Hypoplasia comes in different degrees ranging from minor coordination and movement problems, to extreme cases, in which cats are completely paralyzed. The practitioner who mentioned the flag pole tail probably based this opinion on his own limited experience with Cerebeller Hypoplasia. I now know that this information is incorrect, but with limited information published on the condition at the time, we had to take the word of a regular practitioner until we started seeing a specialist who has advance education and training in the field of neurology. It is also important to note that since Cerebeller Hypoplasia comes in various extremes, what is true for one cat with this condition may not be true of another.

You are indeed correct in that at first the doctors said Moki had Cerebeller Hypoplasia, then they said he didn't. However without an MRI image of Moki's Cerebellum, these doctors where only guessing based on an observation of Moki. Since they couldn't actually see Moki's Cerebellum at the time, to know if it was fully developed, they had to put together the pieces of information as best they could without an actual image to view. Now that we have an actual MRI image of Moki's Cerebellum, we know for sure that it is slightly under developed. Does Moki actually have Cerebeller Hypoplasia, we don't know for sure. What we know is that Moki has a slightly under developed Cerebellum that looks a lot like what you would expect to see in a cat with Cerebeller Hypoplasia.

It's important to note the wording used by Moki's neurologist on his discharge sheet, "the MRI showed a slightly decreased cerebellar size, which may indicate evidence of degenerative or developmental disease." Notice that Moki's doctor was very careful not to give the disease an actual name. He was also very careful to state that it "may" indicate evidence. He did not say that it actually "did" indicate evidence. He then goes on to state the following, " It is most likely that Moki's problem is developmental or degenerative. However, since he has remained relatively static it is unlikely to be progressive/degenerative." Once again he carefully selects his words and says that it is "most likely...developmental or degenerative," he doesn't actually say that it is "developmental or degenerative," he then goes on to say that it is "unlikely to be progressive/degenerative," which doesn't mean that it's actually not "progressive/degenerative," just "unlikely."

In Moki's particular case their is no black or white, everything appears to be a shade of gray. It's kind of hard to explain, but what Moki's neurologist is saying is that based on their findings, Moki's condition appears to be like those seen in cats with Cerebeller Hypoplasia, who developed the virus as a result of their mothers having Panlukopenia at the time of their conception. He's not saying that it actually was/is a result of this. Therefore everything that follows is either "likely," or "unlikely" based on what they currently know about Cerebeller Hypoplasia, and Moki's current state. So in other words they cannot give us a definite answer at this time. What they can tell us is that right now Moki's orthopedic condition is of bigger concern than his current neurological condition. We know that Moki's orthopedic condition is bad, and at the moment his neurological condition appears to be stable, so they want to set aside the neurological condition for the time being, and focus on the orthopedic problem, then if need be and things change, we can come back to the neurological condition sometime in the future. I hope that all makes sense...

15 comments:

-d ma said...

very informative and remindful of the challenges moki faces...

Kellie The Orange Cat said...

I have been thinking and purraying for Moki for days - finally my Mum had time to get on the computer. I was very pleased that the doctors felt that Moki's neurologic condition appears stable.

I will continue to purray for you Moki my sweet friend.

Daisy said...

Moki's story is really an interesting puzzle. Thanks for providing so much good information. I am hoping that there is something that can be done to help Moki's orthopedic issues now.

Texas said...

Wow, that was very informative indeed! Thanks for answering my qwestions!

Fui and Suey said...

Thankyou for such an informative series of posts.

We're purring for you, little guy!!

Jane said...

Thank you for posting such informative updates on Moki's test results. They are really educational, and bring home the true extent of little Moki's problems. I'm so glad that the vets are going to try and find a way to help Moki with the thoracic inlet issue. I wonder if Moki's unique way of moving contributes to the the way the bone has remodelled itself? If that was the case, maybe there's a few things that would help, like a body brace along with the physio?

Sending love to you all, there's so much to take in and it must be emotionally exhausting, make sure you take care of yourselves too xx

Jan's Funny Farm said...

However do you keep up with so much information? It is so challenging just to read it.

We so hope Moki's orthopedic problem can be helped.

Babs (Beetle) said...

I have an award for you on my blog.

Purrs, Sukie x

.LOA said...

moki thanks for coming over it was sweet i did not have a long list but i did have one a ward i will missand all my coment i have gotten but it is ok i am just so dum on this and impatient lol

Camie's Kitties said...

Thank you for the information about Moki. We love hearing about him, and what vets think is wrong. How did his PT go this week?

Tiki, Tavi, Cody and Camie

Criz Lai said...

Wow.. this again is very informative. I'm still praying for Moki. I hope to hear more good news on his treatments. Take care Moki :)

Criz & the J Family Kitties
http://crizcats.blogspot.com/

Karen Jo said...

Thank you for such an informative post on Moki's condition. I hope and pray that the vets will be able to help Moki with his orthopedic problems.

Poppy Q said...

Moki, I am thinking of you and am thankful for all the smart cat doctors who are helping you out. I think it all sounds like they are saying that you are a cute guy and lucky to have such a loving family who look after you so well.

Hope all of your baldy patches are healing up.

Poppy Q

meowers from missouri said...

dear furriend moki, we are glad to hear you got through all your tests ok, an' hope your baldy patches re-fur in record time!

while it is inneresting to hear all the beans' blah-blah-blah, an' our mom reads it furry closely, what us meowers wanna say is, no matter what the medical news is,

WE LOVE YOU!!! an' we send you many, many hugs an' headbonks.

nels, ed, nitro, an' xingxing

LOA & STEPPA said...

Hi moki i was so bizzy feling sorry for me i forgot to tell u i love this pic of u 2 u ar so beautiful tell your bean i love all the info she got on here