We're hanging in there.
After three calls to Dr. Sparling this morning (poor guy, no holidays for him with Jaida and her mums around) we ended up heading in to the clinic today. The fluid buildup around her neck just seemed like "too much". It's really hard to judge this, though; we don't have any experience with what's "normal" for a large seroma. It was a good thing too: when Kim took her out of her crate, her neck and shoulder were all wet...fluids had wicked up her bandage and leaked out.
So I went in with Jaida this afternoon, and Dr. Sparling cut off her bandage. The top (vertical) part of the incision is healing well, but the bottom part is still kind of mushy-looking because the fluids are draining out of a part of it, keeping the surrounding skin moist.
I have to say, it was a bit crazy how much stuff came out of that incision. It was like watching a water-balloon deflate, only redder. Pretty gross, but nothing surprises me anymore, and I did well holding her while the vet applied pressure to push the rest of the fluids out. There are still no signs of infection, so that's good news. The amazing thing was that she didn't flinch throughout the whole ordeal, even with direct pressure on the surgical site.
In fact, we haven't had a single "ouch" today, for the first time. If we brace her good shoulder while she's eating or going to the bathroom, we can apply some resistance if she starts to flinch away. This seems to stop the whatever it is that's making her scream.
Back to the clinic. So, after the surgical site drained FOREVER, we bandaged her back up. She'll go back to the clinic tomorrow and will likely stay for a few days. She'll probably get her drain after all (I know I said she got it on Friday, but Dr. Sparling decided to hold off on it for a while longer). I think we're throwing in the towel for natural drainage and are willing to take the risks associated with the drain. While in the clinic she's get routine bandage changes, draining as needed, monitoring...and her moms will get another mental health break.
Still hanging in there.
It occurred to me that I hadn't updated between Friday and Monday...I'll fill in what I can. She came home Saturday afternoon, bandaged from neck to belly, in an attempt to apply pressure on the whole area that was building fluids. She was put on a second, stronger antibiotic (zenequin) along with her cephalexin, to be on the safe side, and continued to get Metacam for pain every 24 hours.
She was living in a crate about 23 hours of the day, and took to it with grace...mostly...she was not thrilled about it, but was resigned and not crying constantly (although there were definitely a few temper tantrums at first).
The fluid initially mostly stayed where it should, although we applied more pressure wrap around her upper chest/lower neck on Sunday morning to be safe, since things were looking a little bulgy there.
She still had moments of acute pain, but they didn't last as long as they did the first day she was home with us after the surgery. It seemed to happen primarily when she went to the bathroom or was eating. Sometimes it was simply when she was standing, without reason. She was crying/screaming and flinching her "bad" shoulder backwards, trying to lean on something, sometimes almost falling over in what seemed like an attempt to escape what was hurting.
Things were reasonably good until Monday when the fluid buildup got out of hand again...(above)
Monday, July 2, 2007