Hip Dysplasia - Any advice needed!

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Hip Dysplasia - Any advice needed!

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Old 04-14-2016, 02:07 PM
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Hip Dysplasia - Any advice needed!

Our dog Charlie, a 5.5 year old Bichon Frise has recently been seen by our vet, and after x-rays, etc. been diagnosed with hip dysplasia in both hips. His limp is particularly pronounced on his right hand side He's always had a bit of a 'John Wayne' style to his walk and I suspect we're now finding out why.

This was about a month ago, and Charlie is currently on previcox and a joint supplement (Yumove) and has just had his first acupuncture session today (we’re currently on a 3 week waiting list to commence hydrotherapy)
Unfortunately the anti-inflammatories have had no effect and if anything he has got worse over the last month. We have already discussed with our vet the possibility of a Femoral head and neck excision arthroplasty.
Charlie is c. 8.2 kg so we have been told that he would be a reasonable candidate for this surgery as opposed to a total hip replacement.

We have pet insurance and our claim has been accepted. and whilst this is a lifetime policy, it has an annual limit per condition of £2,000. This doesn't go far of course and we've spent c. £850 just getting to this point.

When discussing the FHO op, our vet is suggesting a figure of c. £1800 and I have no idea whether this is about right or a tad expensive. I had a quick look online and the only place I could find with prices listed on the website was Towcester Vets. Admittedly there are 1.5 hours down the road, but the est. cost is £600-£800 and they take surgical referrals from other vets seemingly!

So my questions are, and sorry it's taken me so long to get to the point, has anyone got any experience of using another vet to carry out an operation? Does the 'local' vet who undertook the initial investigation generally co-operate with sharing copies of the x-rays, etc.? And are we possibly even jumping the gun a little with regards to considering an op when the condition was only diagnosed a month ago?

All in all, I'm thoroughly confused and a work colleague of mine mentioned this as an excellent site, where others may be able to offer some practical advice.

Thanks for reading this far - I'm sure I've read shortly books.

Regards Pete
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:31 PM
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Personally, I'd get a second set of eyes to look at any and all records before proceeding with surgery and such. Just to be sure.
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Old 04-14-2016, 02:41 PM
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Sorry to hear
I don't know about your question or your country's veterinary practices, but there is always the option of finding pet insurance willing to cover pre-existing conditions. A great company can pay up to 90% of it and ongoing care. Reviews are all over the place though and a lot shy away from documented pre-existing conditions and genetic disorders. If not, there's also an online organization of vets that offer 25% off the bill of every visit to a participating vet. It's not as much as some 1,800 pounds off of a 2,000 op, but it's still something.
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Old 04-15-2016, 12:05 AM
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when you can afford it, a very experienced surgeon is always preferable (I would personally rather have a surgeon do this surgery than have myself do it, even though I have done dozens and all worked out well... but surgeons just do these better with the best/fastest recovery possible. Even though an FHO in a smaller dog is not a terribly complicated surgery, sometimes a major nerve can be damaged, or a bone shattered, if one is careless or does not understand the anatomy perfectly or have all the proper tools.... with disastrous results.
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by ppsears View Post
Our dog Charlie, a 5.5 year old Bichon Frise has recently been seen by our vet, and after x-rays, etc. been diagnosed with hip dysplasia in both hips. His limp is particularly pronounced on his right hand side He's always had a bit of a 'John Wayne' style to his walk and I suspect we're now finding out why.

This was about a month ago, and Charlie is currently on previcox and a joint supplement (Yumove) and has just had his first acupuncture session today (we’re currently on a 3 week waiting list to commence hydrotherapy)
Unfortunately the anti-inflammatories have had no effect and if anything he has got worse over the last month. We have already discussed with our vet the possibility of a Femoral head and neck excision arthroplasty.
Charlie is c. 8.2 kg so we have been told that he would be a reasonable candidate for this surgery as opposed to a total hip replacement.

We have pet insurance and our claim has been accepted. and whilst this is a lifetime policy, it has an annual limit per condition of £2,000. This doesn't go far of course and we've spent c. £850 just getting to this point.

When discussing the FHO op, our vet is suggesting a figure of c. £1800 and I have no idea whether this is about right or a tad expensive. I had a quick look online and the only place I could find with prices listed on the website was Towcester Vets. Admittedly there are 1.5 hours down the road, but the est. cost is £600-£800 and they take surgical referrals from other vets seemingly!

So my questions are, and sorry it's taken me so long to get to the point, has anyone got any experience of using another vet to carry out an operation? Does the 'local' vet who undertook the initial investigation generally co-operate with sharing copies of the x-rays, etc.? And are we possibly even jumping the gun a little with regards to considering an op when the condition was only diagnosed a month ago?

All in all, I'm thoroughly confused and a work colleague of mine mentioned this as an excellent site, where others may be able to offer some practical advice.

Thanks for reading this far - I'm sure I've read shortly books.

Regards Pete
Sorry to hear about your little dog's problems.

I have had dogs reffered to vets more specialised in certain procedures. They do share information with your own vet, but they might still want to take their own x-rays - say from a different angle, or bloods so they have the most update state of your dog's health.. Prices vary from vet to vet, where are you, I might be able to point you to one.

Who is your insurer? Some will only allow referals to vets on their list. When is your insurance renewal date? If it is close - you could claim the money spent so far now, then wait till you go into the new year so you would have £2000 to spend on the surgery itself.
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:11 AM
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.....but there is always the option of finding pet insurance willing to cover pre-existing conditions.
That's a new one on me...could you name one of these insurance companies to see if they could help the OP?
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:19 AM
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Originally Posted by lzrddr View Post
when you can afford it, a very experienced surgeon is always preferable (I would personally rather have a surgeon do this surgery than have myself do it, even though I have done dozens and all worked out well... but surgeons just do these better with the best/fastest recovery possible. Even though an FHO in a smaller dog is not a terribly complicated surgery, sometimes a major nerve can be damaged, or a bone shattered, if one is careless or does not understand the anatomy perfectly or have all the proper tools.... with disastrous results.
Wow! Are you a vet? Are you in the UK? Your comments are quite scary - carelessness, not understanding the anatomy, not having the right tools = disastrous results.
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:20 AM
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Originally Posted by icemaiden View Post
Sorry to hear about your little dog's problems.

Who is your insurer? Some will only allow referals to vets on their list. When is your insurance renewal date? If it is close - you could claim the money spent so far now, then wait till you go into the new year so you would have £2000 to spend on the surgery itself.
Thanks to everyone for their thoughts and taking the time to respond.

Icemaiden, we're in Essex SS11 but would be happy to travel within reason! Unfortunately our insurance renewal date (Animal Friends) isn't for another 9/10 months or so we are kinda resigned to the insurance not covering all our medical bills. If we could however minimise this we would of course like to consider this as an option.

Thanks again all.

Pete
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:37 AM
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Unfortunaly, I'm in the north, so can't recommend anybody.

I believe Animal Friends may be one of those who have a list of approved referral vets. You can use other referral vets if you choose but you would have to pay £200 extra. Although there are referral vets who will pay that on your behalf. Confused? Best ask AF or your vet for that list and then get your vet to ask those vets for quotes. Some referral vets can arrange for finance - so again something you might look into.

I also think that AF have a time limit of 90 days for claim submissions, so make sure your claim for what you have paid our so far, goes in soon. You can make further claims connected to the same condition.

Good luck finding a competent, reasonably priced vet who will make your doggy better.
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Old 04-15-2016, 07:57 AM
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Wow! Are you a vet? Are you in the UK? Your comments are quite scary - carelessness, not understanding the anatomy, not having the right tools = disastrous results.
Surgery comes with scary complications, I'm an Aussie registered podiatrist which means I can perform small uncomplicated surgeries. To gain informed consent I need to make sure the patient is aware of all possible complications, including and not limited to infection, poor aesthetic results and cardiac arrest even though I only use local anesthesia. My point is this; carelessness, not understanding anatomy and not having the right tools are valid concerns in any surgery but especially when vets generalize in so many areas.

In any form of surgery, if the person performing it does not make you feel comfortable get a second opinion.
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