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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 30325
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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Is Dr Salkin available to answer a question please? I am

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Is Dr Michael Salkin available to answer a question please? I am having trouble with the payment page so will try again now. Be grateful of reply then i will send question, but its a bit lengthy. Thanks
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

You're speaking with Dr. Michael Salkin. If I'm not out hiking I'm chained to my computer by evil gnomes. What's up "Customer"?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi, thank you so much. I was having difficulty processing payment and I lost my long question. I will explain again here.You helped me with Dolly a while ago with some stomatitis. She ended up seeing a dentist and having half mouth extraction and a mass removed. All came back clear and she was doing much better after surgery. Then she randomly and very acutely became painful on one day. She licked and scratched a large hotspot between her shoulders. Right where injections get given. She was painful that day and we thought maybe a bite or some sort of trauma but couldnt be sure. Now I mention it because it may be relevant to the latest concern which is left fore leg lameness. The hotspot was very slow to heal, very slow. After 7 weeks I commenced cold laser treatment with my holistic vet. The hotspot healed within 10 days foollowing. It was remarkable. However, during the last 3 weeks and once dolly was on no other medication we noted a mild intermittant limp on left front leg. Only very occasionally and after getting up. It would last a few steps then go. As she healed and was off meds she became more mobile and active. She had been subdued during the time of her stomatitis and then hotspot due to lots of meds and having to wear a jacket to stop her scratching, although she was never really itchy. We assumed a little arthritis and my holistic vet also an MRCVS examined her and so did my regular vet. Neither found anything remarkable but she seemed a little tighter in her left shoulder than right. Last week she was really good. I didnt even notice a limp last 4 or 5 days and has been playing running around chasing things. Happy relaxed and eating well. wee and poo seem normal. Today though she woke up and got up and was very lame. Even sitting holding her paw up. This is the worst I have seen her and yet at 5am I got up to see her skipping around absolutely fine!I do tend to worry a lot about her and I know my anxiety may be making things seem worse, but I am really worried in case she has an osteosarcoma or something similarly sinister. I have read intermittant lameness is a sign. I also feel the hotspot must have been related, maybe from pain in that area which could have been caused by a trauma, but i didnt notice any lameness at the time and i am failry sharp at picking up anything wrong with her. During any limping before she has not been at all worried by it, she will still move around and seem relaxed. Today though she seemed uncomfortable and a little stressed by the discomfort. She had a laser treatment earlier today by my holistic vet to see if it helps at all. I dont know whether to take her to emergency vet but this is likely to be very stressful and they seem unlikely to do x rays as long as she is moving about ok which she is. I have requested x rays with my regular vet but they wanted to do a 10 day steroid trial first to see if it settles. I agreed although I havent given her steroids as yet as she was doing so well last week. I thought we were on the mend. I need to rule out any cancer or serious bone problems so I know what to do next.I just wonder what your thoughts are about osteosarcoma and will this show up on a regular x ray or should i persue mri?She is currently moving a bit better and has eaten well again. I will try to upload a video of her I took this morning. She doesnt seem to have any sore areas but today was generally grumpy about being prodded about.Thanks in advance, sorry for the rambling post. Have been so worried about so many things lately. I feel they must somehow be connected, its all to strange otherwise. Also just as an extra note, my other cat had a similar lameness on right front last couple of weeks. They are half sisters same age. Not sure how that could possibly be connected but ......Jess x
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

I understand your concern. Osteosarcoma is uncommon in cats and would be expected to cause progressively worsening and unabating intractable pain. She doesn't sound like a cat with such a terrible cancer. She may have been digging at that area because it hurt but I would wonder why she isn't continuing to do so if she's still hurting. I agree with you; X-rays are indicated - not only of that limb but shoulder blade and cervical spine. A dorsal root signature sign (similar to sciatica but in the front rather than rear limb) radiates down the limb and so the problem may reside in her cervical (neck) spine rather than extremity.

In most cases, geriatric osteoarthritis is found in a 10 year old cats such as she. I suspect that you're going to see a nice response to the steroid. Please continue our conversation if you wish.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
O k thank you. I think that sounds encouraging. The sciatica type pain.... I guess that could come and go and be aggrevated by certain movement. It just seems so strange for the turnabout so suddenly. Ok I will begin the steroids tonight and hope they give her some relief but will organise x rays of spine etc on tuesday. As luck would have it it is a bank holiday here so not vets until tuesday except emergency and im not sure that is warranted. My husband did remark it looked almost like a trapped nerve, the way it hurts, then doesnt hurt. Then goes away for days etc.Thank you, |I will try and nurse her through the weekend. II hope the arthritis isnt too severe. She seems to have good range of movement and as i said is still a very active cat. Is there a possibility of a soft tissue injury that could wax and wain like this?Jess x
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Yes, sprains and strains need to be considered. Very difficult to confirm, however. You don't need to go to the ER with her. I can't imagine anything of an emergency nature. I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.

Dr. Michael Salkin and other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. I will update as soon as I have any news. Thank you for this. x
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 1 year ago.

Thank you for your kind accept. I appreciate it, Jess.