Alpaca Update ~ 10/18

Hello everyone,

I just finished giving Alpaca his 2 o’clock treatment. He also received his anti inflammatories.

When I came in this morning, I had thought he was improving. His cheeks were not filled with food and he was chewing his cud. I thought I even heard him swallow. Unfortunately, when I went back to give him his 10 o’clock treatment, his cheeks were swollen again. When I offered him food, he was not interested. So, I guess we haven’t made much improvement today. 😦

BUT I will say that his behavior has changed for the better. He is active in the stall and has gotten around to throwing his leg out if you let the fluid line touch it. His spirits are good.

I have been doing a lot of google searching today. One thing that did come up that I want to ask the doctor when she calls me tomorrow to check on Alpaca (she called me this morning as well), is something called Myasthenia Gravis. It is “serious muscle-weakness”. And what I am reading is: “The hallmark of myasthenia gravis is fatiguability. Muscles become progressively weaker during periods of activity and improve after periods of rest. Muscles that control eye and eyelid movement, facial expression, chewing, talking, and swallowing are especially susceptible.”

Now this is a shot in the dark on my side.. as I have NO clue if this can happen to an alpaca, but I do know that it can happen in animals. He can easily be tested by a Tensilon test which is ” an injection of edrophonium chloride used to diagnosis myasthenia gravis”. Once diagnosed, it can be treated with:

“Treatment is by medication and/or surgery. Medication consists mainly of cholinesterase inhibitors to directly improve muscle function and immunosuppressant drugs to reduce the autoimmune process. Thymectomy is a surgical method to treat MG. For emergency treatment, plasmapheresis or IVIG can be used as a temporary measure to remove antibodies from the blood circulation.”

So let’s see what my conversation with the doctor unfolds…. another update will be given tomorrow .

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