Why My Dog Is Falling Down: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments #dogs #loss


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Why Is My Dog Falling Down?

Little kids love spinning in place until they fall down. But when we’re talking about our dogs, there’s really no good reason for loss of balance.

So why do dogs fall down? Is it possible to treat loss of balance? And when should your canine companion see a vet?

When to See a Vet

Injury, stroke. poisoning, and infections can all cause your dog to lose its balance. Because these things can be dangerous or even life threatening, call your vet immediately if your dog is falling down.

Dog Loss of Balance: Common Causes and Treatments

A few of the more common causes of falling down in dogs include:

Vestibular Syndrome. Vestibular syndrome is caused by dysfunction of the inner ear. Because the symptoms occur suddenly, they are sometimes confused with symptoms of stroke. Along with loss of balance and falling over, signs may include head tilt, walking in circles, vomiting. nausea, and flicking of the eyes from side to side.

Treating vestibular syndrome depends on the cause. Many dogs need support for secondary symptoms such as nausea, vomiting. and dehydration .

Ear Infection. Inner ear infections are a common cause of dogs losing their balance. Other symptoms include head shaking and scratching, eye flicking, walking in circles. Often there may be redness, swelling, discharge, and odor associated with the affected ear.

Left untreated, infections of the external parts of the ear can move deeper, become more serious, and lead to complications like inner ear infection or meningitis. So always have your dog seen by a veterinarian if you suspect an ear infection. Treating ear infections may include a professional cleaning, topical medications. antibiotics. anti-inflammatories, and possibly surgery for chronic or serious infections.

Injury. Injuries such as head trauma or damage to the inner ear can cause dogs to lose their balance. Your dog can’t tell you when it’s in pain, and dogs sometimes mask hurt with behaviors such as wagging their tail. So it’s important to be aware of canine signs of pain. They include slower reflexes, heavy panting, biting or licking the wounded area, anxiety. enlarged pupils, reluctance to lie down, and change in appetite.

Continued

Stroke . Strokes in dogs are fairly uncommon. But they do happen. A stroke can be caused by many things, including blood clots. hemorrhage, head trauma, high blood pressure. kidney disease. and even migrating worms. Symptoms of stroke in dogs include loss of balance, head tilt, circling, falling down, and loss of vision .

Treating stroke involves managing the underlying problem and preventing additional strokes. It also includes caring for the aftereffects of a stroke.

Tumors. Brain tumors are not uncommon in older dogs. They can also happen in younger dogs, especially boxers and Boston terriers. Brain tumors can lead to a loss of balance, as well as a host of other symptoms.

The exact symptoms depend on the tumor and its location. They may include seizures. behavior changes, changes in appetite or thirst, signs of pain. head tilt, swaying, a wide stance, lack of coordination, head tremors, flicking of the eye. and pacing. Treating brain tumors may involve chemotherapy. radiation therapy. surgery, and other care.

Other Reasons for Loss of Balance in Dogs

Any process which causes inflammation of the brain — referred to as encephalitis — may cause a dog to lose its balance. Encephalitis can result from tick-borne diseases, fungal infections, protozoal infections, and many other causes. Other signs include fever and depression .

Your vet can help you and your pet share a long and happy life together. If you have any questions about your dog’s health, be sure to talk to your veterinarian about your concerns.

WebMD Veterinary Reference Reviewed by Amy Flowers, DVM on 3/, 015

Sources

Fogle, B. Caring for Your Dog. Dorling Kindersley, Ltd. 2002.

Fogle, B. ASPCA Complete Dog Care Manual. DK Publishing, 1993.

North Carolina State University, College of Veterinary Medicine: “Neurology.”

Bairbre O’Malley Veterinary Hospital: “Healthcare for the Senior Dog.”

Prospect Veterinary Centre: “Stroke.”

University of Minnesota, Veterinary Diagnostic Laboratory: “EIC Information.”

University of Florida, Neurology Service: “Vestibular Disease in Animals.”

Orchard Veterinary Group Glastonbury: “First Aid in Pets II.”

Veterinary Partner: “Ear Infections,” and “Poison-Proof Your Pet.”

Cornell University, Department of Animal Science: “Poisonous Plants Affecting Dogs.”

Kahn, C. The Merck/Merial Manual for Pet Health, Home Edition. Merck Co. Inc. 2007.

© 2015 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.


Synovial Fluid Analysis #synovial #fluid #analysis, # #2006 #21st #abnormal #abnormally #activities


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Synovial Fluid Analysis

Synovial fluid analysis is a group of tests that examine joint (synovial) fluid. The tests help diagnose and treat joint-related problems.

Alternative Names

Joint fluid analysis; Joint fluid aspiration

How the test is performed

A sample of synovial fluid is needed for this test. Synovial fluid is normally a thick, straw-colored liquid found in small amounts in joints, bursae, and tendon sheaths.

After the area is cleaned, the health care provider will insert a sterile needle through the skin and into the joint space. Once in the joint, fluid is drawn through the needle into a sterile syringe.

The fluid sample is sent to the laboratory. The laboratory technician will check the sample’s color and clarity, and then place it under a microscope to check it for red and white blood cells, crystals (in the case of gout), and bacteria. In addition, there may be a chemical analysis, and if infection is a concern, a sample will be cultured to see if any bacteria grow.

How to prepare for the test

Normally, no special preparation is necessary, but contact your health care provider before the test to make sure. Tell your doctor if you are taking blood thinners, as they can affect test results.

How the test will feel

Occasionally, the health care provider will first inject local anesthesia with a small needle, which will sting. The aspiration is done with a larger needle and may also cause some pain. The procedure usually lasts less than one minute.

Why the test is performed

The test can help diagnose the cause of pain or swelling in joints. Removing the fluid can also help relieve joint pain.

This test may be used to diagnose:

  • Gout
  • Infection
  • Other inflammatory joint conditions
  • Joint injury
  • Osteoarthritis

What abnormal results mean

Abnormal joint fluid may look cloudy or abnormally thick.

Blood in the joint fluid may be a sign of injury inside the joint or a body-wide bleeding problem. An excess amount of normal synovial fluid can also be a sign of osteoarthritis.

What the risks are

  • Infection of the joint — unusual but more common with repeated aspirations
  • Bleeding into the joint space

Special considerations

Ice or cold packs may be applied to the joint for 24 to 36 hours after the test to reduce the swelling and joint pain. Depending on the exact problem, you can probably resume your normal activities after the procedure. Talk to your health care provider to determine what activity is most appropriate for you.

References

Knight JA, Kjeldsberg CR. Cerebrospinal, synovial, and serous body fluids. In: McPherson RA, Pincus MR, eds. Henry’s Clinical Diagnosis and Management by Laboratory Methods. 21st ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2006:chap 28.

Review Date: 7/10/2009

The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. A licensed physician should be consulted for diagnosis and treatment of any and all medical conditions. Call 911 for all medical emergencies. Links to other sites are provided for information only — they do not constitute endorsements of those other sites. Copyright 2010 A.D.A.M. Inc. as modified by University of California San Francisco. Any duplication or distribution of the information contained herein is strictly prohibited.

Information developed by A.D.A.M. Inc. regarding tests and test results may not directly correspond with information provided by UCSF Medical Center. Please discuss with your doctor any questions or concerns you may have.

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