Friday, August 10, 2012
Autumn came into rescue last month. Her foster mom (Dr. Lucinda Hodges) sometimes slips and calls her Summer. :-)Autumn was heartworm positive. She's only a year old, so very young.When Dr. Hodges tested her level, she was shocked to see how many heartworms Autumn had.They were visible in the bloodwork sample-- a rare thing.Dollar keeps her company and is one of her friends. I'm sure he'll be worried about her during the main part of her treatment.Autumn spent a month on doxycycline to kill off a bacteria that lives inside the microfilariae and adult heartworms called Wolbachia. The bacteria can cause Anaphylaxis (Anaphylactic shock) to the host once the microfilariae start to die off in large numbers and when the adult heartworms die off and "shower the bloodstream" with dead worm fragments. (Roger sent me this information.)She began the "real" treatment this week, which uses Immiticide. This is the dangerous part of the treatment as it begins to kill the adult heartworms. This could have all been prevented if monthly heartworm treatment had been given to her. Because this treatment is so stressful, she has to be on crate-rest and very short leash walks. Any form of activity, especially at the 2 week mark, could cause blood clots in her bloodstream. This could be fatal, so every precaution is being taken. Autumn is a beautiful little girl. We are all cheering her on!