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Dog Fistual on Face

by Lisa-Marie
(Santiago, Chile)


My 12 year old Shitsu/Maltese mix has had an ongoing problem with a fistula on her face just below her right eye for more than a year now. When she initially started with symptoms the vet gave her a local anasthetic and probed around inside to see if she had a foreign body lodged in there, but she couldn´t find anything.


A couple of weeks later the fistula hadn't healed and she was started on Prednisone 5mg and Clindamicin for two weeks. After this she was free of symptoms for about 3 months and then the fistula formed again.

She received another round of Prednisone and Clinamicin and was symptom free for about 5 months. After this the vets decided to take a contrast x-ray to see if the fistula was due to a dental abscess. The results of the x-ray showed that there was no abscess and the vets could not determine the source of the fistula from the x-ray.

They recommended surgery which I am hesitant to do due to a heart murmur that she has. Currently I am medicating her with Prednisone but not antibiotics, when I gradually reduce the Prednisone the fistula returns.

I also give her 1000mg Omega 3, 200iu Vitamin E, 10mg of CoQ10 and 250mg Vitamin C divided in 2 doses per day. She has been raw fed for the las 9 years and has not been vaccinated since the age of 3,she was vaccinated once for Rabies.

I would like to wean her off the Prednisone but every time I try, the fistula returns. Do you have any recommendations?

Currently the fistula is fairly stable, but there is a very small amount of clear fluid that is excreted. When the fistula is full blown the liquid that comes out is slightly tinged with blood, there is no puss and no foul odour. Other than the heart murmur and the fistula she is healthy, the heart condition doesn't seem to affect her. She is active, eats well, has a normal weight.

Comments for Dog Fistual on Face

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Feb 28, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Dog Fistula on Face
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Lisa Marie,
For your 12 year old female Shih Tzu/Maltese mix with a non-healing fistulous ulcer on her face, it seems like she is healthy enough to 'wall' off this problem to one location (for a year without it spreading!), and with an incredibly strong Vital Force to prevent complete suppression of her symptoms with the prednisone. But she has not been healthy enough to completely heal.

You wrote:
"I would like to wean her off the Prednisone but every time I try, the fistula returns. Do you have any recommendations?"

Yes! Homeopathy would be a good way to treat her. A holistic veterinarian knowledgeable in homeopathy, would be best to take the case. With the symptoms you have given so far, I just did a quick repertorization of her symptoms:
1. Discharge suppressed
2. Watery discharge
3. Blood tinged/streaked discharge
4. Heart murmur
5. Skin ulcer, fistulous
The TOP remedy is Arsenicum, followed in order by, Silicea, Sulphur, and Phosphorus.

Taking the case, means that each of these remedies have different qualities exhibited by the patient. Arsenicum patients are cold and chilly and also very thirsty. Silicea patients tend to be shy and also seek out warmth. Sulphur patients are very HOT, and prefer to lay on tile floors, have finicky appetites and a dirty hair coat. Phosphorus patients are very sensitive to the emotions of those around them, have a big fear of thunder, and love to eat ice or ice cold foods or ice water.

In the meantime, bacterial and fungal cultures should be done, to rule out a deep anaerobic bacterial infection, or a chronic fungal disease.

Her diet and the supplements you have her on sound good. Only one suggestion regarding the Vitamin C. To make sure it is the 'buffered' Vit C, and not Ascorbic Acid. Since dogs have 10 times MORE hydrochloric acid in their stomach than humans, they are much more sensitive to acids.

With the guidance of a holistic veterinarian, it would be best to determine the appropriate remedy, and start with a low potency, and then gradually reduce the dose of Prednisone as the dose/potency of homeopathic remedy is increased.

TO BE CONTINUED PART TWO

Feb 28, 2012
My Online Vet Response for: Dog Fisula on Face PART TWO
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Lisa Marie,
Here is the rest of my response:

I would also suggest adding in some supplements to support her immune system, and continue her other supplements. There are a number of supplements available to 'boost' the immune system. I am not sure how accessible they are in Santiago, Chile.

1. Immuplex from Standard Process
2. Missing Link Canine Formula

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us by clicking the like button at the top of the left margin. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.





Apr 12, 2012
Update on fistula
by: Lisa

I started Mani on the homeopatic remedy Arsenicum album which was the best fit to her symptoms. I also started her on Transfer factor and started slowly reducing her dose of prednisone.

She is now down to 2.5mg (from 5 mg)and so far has had no signs of the fistula worsening. The fistula responded to the initial doses of the homeopatic remedy with the excretion of blood, a new symptom for her, after a few days it stopped excreting blood and slowly closed and has remained closed and dry since. She also had a few days of what seemed to be kennel cough and that also disappeared.

I will continue to very slowly reduce the prednisone until she is off it completely.

Thanks again for your help and good advice.

Apr 13, 2012
My Online Vet Response for Dog Fistula on Face
by: Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

Hi Lisa,
Thank you for the update on Mani. It is really too difficult to manage a homeopathic case online. It would be better for you to have Mani under the care of a holistic veterinarian. I am glad that the Arsenicum album seems to be helping, but determining the potency, the frequency of giving each dose and then weaning her off of the Prednisone must be fine tuned according to the patient as the case progresses.

Therefore, I am not sure if you have chosen to give the Arsenicum album 30c, or 30x, or every day or just once for one dose. That is where a holistic veterinarian who has taken the case and examined Mani can advise you as Mani responds.

Click here to find a holistic veterinarian in your area. Another resource for vets knowledgeable in homeopathy is AVH.org.

Please keep us posted.

Take care,
Dr. Carol Jean Tillman

P.S. If you've found this service or our web site helpful, please "Like" us
by clicking the like button at the top of the left
margin
. Thank you!

DISCLAIMER: This educational advice is based on the depth of your question and the picture you submitted. The above should never replace the advice of your local veterinarian, as they have the ability to evaluate your dog in person.

Related Pages:
- Dog Skin Conditions,
- Dog Itchy Skin,
- Dog Skin Rash,
- Dog Skin Allergies,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Skin Rashes, Marks, Spots, Lesions & Patches (including itchy skin and mange) Section,
- Ask a Vet Online Library - Dog Hair Loss Section


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