Second Opinion
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Thread: Second Opinion

  1. #1
    Valmc is offline Junior Member
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    DefaultSecond Opinion

    I was just wondering, how often does everyone get a second opinion?

    My daisy went to the vet about a week ago because she became hoarse and got a slight cough and her vet listened to her and she was diagnosed with a slight heart murmur and was put on meds. She went back yesterday for a check up and the vet said she sounded better, the meds were working for her. Well last night she was having trouble with her breathing and sleeping so I called our vet and she was busy with surgeries all day and couldn't see her. I ended up taking her to another vet and they checked her out, listened to her and even did xrays and they said that she does not have a heart murmur and her lungs and heart are fine. So when you have 2 different opinions from 2 different vets, what do you do?

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  3. #2
    murphsmom is offline Senior Member
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    Go see a third vet. Something does not sound right.


    MurphySullyHogan

  4. #3
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    brody is offline Senior Member
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    How often do I seek a second opinion?

    When my primary vet suggests it ... now I have an usual relationship with my vet. She's been my vet and one of my rescue's three primary vets for over 10 years. I am at the clinic on avergae once a week with something and because of the resuce work we do together she has gotten to see some very odd things with me. She is not at all reticent in telling me who she's brought in to discussions about a particular case and together we work out all possible next steps and what they entail. She works with Sally's canine nutritionist and would work with anyone I asked her to.

    In your particular case I would be very confused and asking both vets for clarification about what they felt the issue was. Did your original vet tell you what grade heart murmur they heard? Was the second vet able to get a good listen to the heart? Nothing on xray does not rule out a pretty significant heart murmur. Often when there has been chronic heart disease the heart becomes enlarged - but if the issue is new there may be no other sign apart from an occasional odd sound on stethoscope.
    I had one cat a few years ago we were doing an ultrasound on (I actually do ultrasounds quite rarely but this case was curious and the ultrasounds specialist, my primary vet and I all felt it was worth a look - it helped that the vets were willing to really cut my cost as they were curious too- and both had recently adopted animals from me ). Both vets thought the liver was going to be biggest issue - turned out the cat had a valve in his heart that wasn't operating properly - listening and xrays both missed this very occasional misfiring of his heart. (He was a HUGE purr head so listening was hard but we had thought we had had a good chance to hear issues)

    So all that is a very long way of saying - it depends on your relationship with your vet. I would not hesitate to share the information from the second visit with the first vet and ask for an explanation (not judgementally - just asking) and ask if a thrid opinion or specialist visit might be in order.
    http://andrea-agilityaddict.blogspot.com/

    “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller

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  6. #4
    BigBrownDog is offline Senior Member
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    One of my human kids has a heart murmur and the examination of his heart involved X-Ray, EKG and most definitively an echo cardiogram. He had his last echo at 8 years old when it was declared innocent for good - much to my relief.

    I would suspect that if the meds were working for your dog that the sound might have abated. Many issues are probably not going to show up on an X-Ray unless there is a stationary problem (present regardless of where the heart is in it's pumping cycle).

    I'd go back to my first vet and express my concern about the different in opinion - and maybe ask for a cardiac ultrasound.
    Sharon, Blaise and Diesel.

  7. #5
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    labby is offline Senior Member
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    Heart murmurs are best diagnosed by echo cardiogram. If your regular vet thinks they heard a heart murmur then the dog should be seen by a canine cardiologist to determine if indeed there is a murmur or not. I've had puppies diagnosed by other vets with heart murmurs, scaring the crap out of their new owners, only to have a canine cardiologist determine it was a regular puppy heart which can skip beats due to excitement.



    Laura





  8. #6
    brody's Avatar
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    and puppies, foals, kittens and children can often out grow mild murmurs too

    should have asked how old is daisy?
    http://andrea-agilityaddict.blogspot.com/

    “I am only one, but still I am one. I cannot do everything, but still I can do something; and because I cannot do everything, I will not refuse to do something that I can do.” H. Keller

  9. #7
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    kassabella is offline Senior Member
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    I trust the opinion of my vet, but for something like this as Laura says I would have it check out further. I find with specialised things the day to day vets always have differeing opinions. So even if my vet had diagnosed it I think I would ask for further testing to be positive.

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