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Discussion Starter #1
Bella's blood work showed elevated liver enzymes!!! OH NOOOOO. The bile acid test results will be back in a few days.... I know its not good but what could this mean? I read if you do just blood work and it shows elevated liver that means more then 70% of liver is damaged?? Is this true?

I told the vet that Ill sit down and talk with them after the BAT comes back. They were sooooo busy I asked if she needed anything special or if she will be alright..Vet said she'll be fine and we have to wait til BAT results are in. I don't have any actually numbers or anymore info on anything. BUT now Im worried and probably won't sleep EVER!!!

if its is liver disease or shunt or MVD or anything serious..is it manageable?? Can our babies still live long and healthy lives?? :smcry:
 

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You are entitled to get a copy of her blood work results. My vet gave me a copy to take home. You should find out her numbers to see exactly how out of the normal range they are.
Sorry, I hope your little one will be okay. I'm sending you positive thoughts.
 

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What was the ALT number? Let us know. Nikki had elevated liver enzymes, and was diagnosed with MVD. She's doing fine now, and all of her blood work is perfect.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I will be getting a copy... I just wanted both at once b/c of this very reason... They were very busy and I didnt want to be rushed...SO when the BAT results are in Ill be there first thing in the morning before anyone arrives so I can get alone time with vet/tech.

she shows no signs of any discomfort or any signs of anything..This girl is happy happy! So Im hoping for the best and hopefully this new diet will get things back into order...Thank you all for all the great information... If I never read the pinned thread on bile acid test I would have no clue!
 

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Try not to worry, dear one. Our little Kirby had shunting and was given l year to live---he lived till 15 w/surgery and love, good care, and many prayers. He was brought to the US for diagnosis---vomited from the time he could eat real food---we were in a program for small dogs w/shunting from vet. hospital in CO. They were wonderful---followed us for a long time. Try to connect w/vet hospital IF you need help. They are the best!!! Until you know more try to sleep, take care of yourself so you will be good for the pup and trust God. He created these little critters for us to enjoy. Blessings. Kitzel & Sandi
 

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MVD is very common in Maltese dogs. One of the best doctors regarding this is Dr. Sharon Center at Cornell. But don't worry too much until you know for sure.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
what really scared me is that I read on the pinned thread of bile acid test, that when BLOOD WORK shows (not bile acid test) elevated liver enzymes that means atleast 70% of liver is damaged!! 70% is a big percentage of anything being damaged!!


Suzan you said Nikki HAD elevated liver enzymes. Does that mean it can be lowered?? or once damaged its damaged for good??
 

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I read if you do just blood work and it shows elevated liver that means more then 70% of liver is damaged?? Is this true?
:smcry:
I'm not sure where you read this but either the info is wrong or you interpreted it incorrectly. It is estimated that up to 70% of all Maltese have higher than normal bile acids, NOT that the liver is 70% damaged. There are VERY FEW Maltese with actual liver shunts. Most dogs with higher than normal bile acids are assumed to have MVD. Of the MVD dogs, most are TOTALLY ASYMPTOMATIC AND LIVE NORMAL, HEALTHY LIVES WITH NO DIETARY OR MEDICAL MANAGEMENT NEEDED.

Relax and enjoy your puppy. :biggrin:
 

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Discussion Starter #12
sorry..I am always thinking the worst...its makes the good news so much better!!! but lets hope for the BEST and thanks all for the love!!!

MaryH that 70% damage of liver comment I am referring about is in the BILE ACID TEST sticky thread that you had started...the 7th post down.. is there any truth to this? maybe I am still reading it wrong and not understanding?!?:huh:
 

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My experience:

Nikki had blood work at 6 months old - pre-spay surgery. Her liver enzymes were elevated. Her bile acid test done the same day was abnormal. The doctor suspected a shunt or MVD, and treated me horribly when I asked "too many questions." I changed vets. The new vet spayed her at 6.5 months and he did a liver biopsy at that time. The liver showed some damage typical to MVD. I put her on the herb Milk Thistle, and I fed her a lot of artichoke hearts to help the liver. I didn't subscribe to the very extreme diet suggestions that some folks on a Yahoo liver shunt/MVD group recommend, as some very knowledgeable people here on SM (via Dr Center,) didn't think it was necessary. I home cook for her. Her diet is fairly typical of any home cooked canine diet.

At 9 months, we returned to the vet for a follow-up visit. She had blood work, and it was completely normal, and has been normal, every time thereafter.

No chemicals - including scented products, are used in our home. We avoid synthetic chemicals in the body too - Nikki will get synthetic meds and vaccines only when absolutely necessary. We brush her teeth every day, so that we can avoid the anesthesia that comes with a dental cleaning. We do these things to avoid stressing her liver and immune system.

Her blood work has been normal since August of 2008. She is totally healthy and has no symptoms whatsoever.
 

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sorry..I am always thinking the worst...its makes the good news so much better!!! but lets hope for the BEST and thanks all for the love!!!

MaryH that 70% damage of liver comment I am referring about is in the BILE ACID TEST sticky thread that you had started...the 7th post down.. is there any truth to this? maybe I am still reading it wrong and not understanding?!?:huh:
You have to see who it is that is posting to a thread as to how much credibility you give to a post. I don't know who that person is and they have not posted in a very very long time. If you continue to read a few posts down even further, there are long time SM'rs pointing out that statement as not really accurate.

I've talked with several breeders lately who all have told me that many of our Malts liver enzymes run high and it does not necessarily mean liver shunt or MVD. Another reason they may be high would be if a vaccine had recently been administered. And I think, even what they ate the night before could have some effect.

If it were me, I'd even consider waiting a month and re-check the liver enzymes before going through a lot of different tests. My view on this subject has really changed from a couple of years ago. And who knows, with more information, it could change again.:blush:

Try to relax and enjoy your precious baby.:grouphug:
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Suzan, you're a great mom!! a lot of you guys are here!!! I'm so thankful to have found such a wonderful forum..

Crystal thanks for your post also....makes me feel a little less stressed.... Bella did get her 16 weeks booster shots just last week!?!! The only reason why I ran the test today is b/c I wanted to see how she was doing before and after her new Dr Harvey's diet.. I'm wondering how much of the vaccine had an affect on her results??


Ill let you guys know in a few days how her bile acid results are.
 

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Suzan, you're a great mom!! a lot of you guys are here!!! I'm so thankful to have found such a wonderful forum..

Crystal thanks for your post also....makes me feel a little less stressed.... Bella did get her 16 weeks booster shots just last week!?!! The only reason why I ran the test today is b/c I wanted to see how she was doing before and after her new Dr Harvey's diet.. I'm wondering how much of the vaccine had an affect on her results??


Ill let you guys know in a few days how her bile acid results are.
Even if her Bile Acids come back as elevated, in light of the fact she had a vaccine just a week ago, I'd really wait a month and re-test.
 

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I know it's hard but try not to panic!

My Libby had evelated bile acids and her Protein C came back abnormal.

She was checked for shunts but thankfully, none were found.

It's MVD with no symptoms. Libby is just as normal as ever. She doesn't even eat a special diet.

I'll say some prayers that everything comes out ok with your fluff too!


I forgot to ask if your baby has any health problems or symptoms?
 

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sorry..I am always thinking the worst...its makes the good news so much better!!! but lets hope for the BEST and thanks all for the love!!!

MaryH that 70% damage of liver comment I am referring about is in the BILE ACID TEST sticky thread that you had started...the 7th post down.. is there any truth to this? maybe I am still reading it wrong and not understanding?!?:huh:
Thanks for leading me to that post. I have no idea where the poster got her information from as I have never seen any printed material or scientific study that says that elevated liver enzymes only show up when the liver is greater than 70% damaged. Liver enzymes can be elevated for a number of reasons and are not always indicative of PSVA/MVD. Dental disease can cause elevated liver enzymes yet once the teeth are cleaned and any infection cleared up the liver enzymes can go back to normal. However, now that you know your pup's liver enzymes are elevated you should have a bile acid test done. All of my adults have been bile acid tested and I bile acid test all of my puppies before they leave my house. Personally, I don't ever want to sell heartbreak (a dog with liver shunt) but, more importantly, as a breeder I want to know what I'm producing. Good luck, don't worry, and keep asking questions. It's how we all learn. :aktion033:
 

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Crystal gave good information it's best to wait and re-test. It's probably just due to the vaccine.

My havanese has had several boughts of pancreatitus due to a previous diet that raised his liver enzymes to scary levels but a month later they were back to normal. He sustained no long term health issues and no liver damage. I am not suggesting your baby has pancreatitus just letting you know that they can be higher and then go back to normal.

BTW he eats Dr. Harvey's now and hasn't had any problems since.

Your a good mommy for being so concerned... your baby is lucky to be so loved and cared for.
 

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Discussion Starter #20 (Edited)
Thanks all!!!!!! what a bunch of supportive people on here! I can probably get some sleep for the time being..I do feel a whole lot better.

PURPLE-PEEP, No health problems besides the coccidia the week I brought her home....she eats,plays,poops,plays,poops sleeps..lol yea def no signs of discomfort or stress...like I said early, only reason I got this done was to see before dr harveys food and after.

BTW Mary I did have a bile acid test done too...that will take a few days for the results....But I will def keep you updated. gooooood night here in NY!!
 
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