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Intrahepatic Portosystemic Shunt: Eeyore

By May 6, 2024 May 21st, 2024 RPAW – Medical Cases

Eeyore was born with an intrahepatic portasystemic shunt. In other words, he had a shunt inside his life that is causing a big problem. A liver shunt occurs when an abnormal connection persists or forms between the portal vein or one of its branches, and another vein, allowing blood to bypass, or shunt, around the liver. In the majority of cases, a liver shunt is caused by a birth defect. When the blood bypasses the liver it bypasses the body’s filter and all of the toxins that may have been filtered out are dumped back into the body. When this happens the body’s ammonia level gets dangerously high and the puppy gets extremely sick. They cannot digest food appropriately, they can not absorb nutrients, their growth is severely stunted and worst of all they can become neurological and even have seizures.

Surgery is the only way to fix a shunt. Shunts outside the liver can be occluded/fixed by a board-certified surgeon at many different facilities. Unfortunately, when the shunt is on the inside of the liver the procedure is much more complex. You cannot just go in and band off the vessel. They have to feed a catheter down a vein in their neck place a stint in the shunt drop wire coils into the shunt and occlude it. That will prevent the blood from flowing around the liver. Only the University of Minnesota has the capability to do this procedure here in MN.

We have had a couple of dogs come through the group that have had this procedure. Daisy Duke and Luke Bryan. They are both doing wonderful now. Eeyore had the procedure and is now living an amazing life! The surgery is to save Eeyore was $6000.

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Heather Fraser

Author Heather Fraser

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