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Rex Recap

A lot of new people have joined so I thought I'd recap what happened to Rex, as a refresher.

On April 18th, I took Rex to my vet because I noticed he was having issues peeing and was not quite acting like himself. My vet kept him for a couple days and got a lot of x-rays and an ultrasound. They discovered what looked like a large object in his abdomen as well as a number of other smaller things and they were having a hard time diagnosing him. They thought it might be a tumor, or multiple tumors, or cancer, they couldn't really tell. So they recommended I take Rex to a veterinary specialist that had an ER with 24/7 staff and an oncologist on site, and that's what I did. They did some more x-rays and ultrasounds and had a number of doctors look at him, and I finally got a call back giving me my options.

They were still unsure exactly what was going on but they also saw the large mass in his abdomen, his prostate was having problems and they still couldn't tell if cancer was actually involved or not. There were also smaller masses, and my choices came down to trying to treat it all with medication, or doing exploratory surgery. After getting as much info as I could get from them and weighing the benefits vs the possible ramifications I decided to go with surgery because there was no guarantee the medication would fix anything, and at least surgery would give them a clearer idea of what was actually going on with him, even if they couldn't fix it right away.

On April 21st, Rex went in for surgery. When I finally got the call from the surgeon there was very good news and very bad news. The good news was that the mass was actually a testicle that had not been removed when he was neutered, and it had become a tumor. They were able to easily remove it and that would also solve his prostate problem, and as far as they knew there was no cancer. So in terms of the reasons I brought him there, they had seemingly fixed it.

The bad news was that when Rex woke up after surgery he began howling, so they gave him Dexdomitor, a sedative, to keep him calm. He immediately had a severely negative reaction to it, he had a spinal seizure and he stopped breathing. Dexdomitor is a reversible drug, and when this happened there was a doctor standing right there, and he administered the reversing agent immediately and they got him breathing again. I can honestly say that if there hadn't been a doctor standing right there when it happened, Rex would not have survived.

Unfortunately, the spinal seizure cost him the use of his legs and most of his muscles. Since then, Rex has not been able to walk. He stayed in the ICU for weeks and was then transferred to the recovery ward, and he was being given physical therapy multiple times a day to try to get his legs working. It has been a very slow, very long process, but Rex has slowly been getting some function back. He still can't stand up on his own but he can walk a bit with assistance, and he can move a lot more than he used to be able to. His therapist thinks he will eventually be able to walk again, but it's a long road.

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