Lupron Hormone Injection for Ascites?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by ClareScifi, May 27, 2017.

  1. ClareScifi

    ClareScifi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Has anyone had success in treating a 3 year old hen who has ascites with hormone injections? If so, how long did she live after the treatment, and how many treatments total did your hen have? Was the hormone you used Lupron injections, or did you do the Deslorelin implants?

    What breeds of your hens have gotten ascites? What do you think was its cause?

    All feedback will be appreciated. My 3 year old Buff Orpington has ascites. Vet thinks it is reproductive system related and thinks hormone injection might help remove fluid. He has done this before and prolonged the life of one hen by 6 months. I'm thinking since it is lovely summer ahead, she might enjoy 6 more months of life? If it were winter, when she'd be confined, not so much. But if she can live out her days eating watermelon and pecking in the garden, would it be worth it for her? Cost $282.00 plus possible additional hormone injections needed at $195.00 each. Every 2 to 6 months. Without this, the doctor says she may live another couple of weeks.

    I have no children. Miscarried. My animals are my babies. I adopted her from an attorney friend who was downsizing and have had her 1 1/2 years. I am quite fond of her.

    Oh, and another thing. The vet seems eager to do the hormone injection. I think he sees it as experimental and possibly a way of furthering research into this condition of ascites. If I did it, her life could be used to help other hens. She wouldn't just die, but could possibly help further research via the treatment. Any thoughts? I know it is terribly expensive.

    Has anyone ever had this hormone treatment go awry, with terrible suffering for your hen, as a consequence?

    Please reply ASAP. I need to make a decision right away. Hen is still at vet's, awaiting my decision as to how to proceed.
     
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  2. biophiliac

    biophiliac Chillin' with the Peeps Premium Member

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  3. biophiliac

    biophiliac Chillin' with the Peeps Premium Member

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    :hugs I totally get you. You are lucky to have a Vet to treat your hen. If you have the ability to pay for this treatment I believe you might feel better if you do. It is not like the hormone treatment will cause her pain or discomfort. I think the theory is that if the ascites is associated with reproductive malfunction of some kind, then hormonal manipulation to 'shut down' egg laying may improve this problem which puts a stress on her heart etc. Wishing you both the best.
     
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  4. bobbi-j

    bobbi-j Chicken Obsessed

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    Your chicken is lucky to have you. I personally can't justify spending that much money on a chicken to keep it alive for 6 more months. But if you can afford it, and you are sure it will work and not cause further suffering, at least you have given her more time. I have had a few chickens with ascites. The first one, I didn't know what it was and let her go for a few days to see if she'd get better. She didn't. She just suffered longer than she should have. Now when I see it, we put them down. My chickens are't my babies, nor are they even considered pets, really, but it's still hard to do it. I don't take putting any animal down lightly.
     
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  5. KikisGirls

    KikisGirls BYC Fan Premium Member Project Manager

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    Will you please update as to what you chose to do.
     
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  6. ClareScifi

    ClareScifi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Thanks, everyone. I decided to give my Henny-Honey the hormone injection. She seems to be doing much better. Her breathing sounds normal, she runs around, pecks at the grass, and enjoys her watermelon and yogurt. During the heat of the day she seeks out the deep shade and rests (it was 98 degrees F here today), but so do all the other hens. I am not letting the rooster near her. It is hard on him, because she is his favorite, but he is coping. The vet said not to let the rooster around her. She doesn't seem to be suffering, but, rather, enjoying the green grass and her buddies. At night I put her in a cage with her two girlfriends and the rooster. That way she can be with her good buds, but I don't have to worry about the rooster mating with her in the morning before I get out to open the coop. This arrangement seems to be working well. Knock on wood. The hardest thing is keeping her away from the cat food. She still runs in a beeline for it, and I know the salt in it is very bad for her. I try not to bring the cat food out until evening, when the chickens are in bed, but sometimes I forget to put it out of sight in the mornings.
     
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  7. ClareScifi

    ClareScifi Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Henny-Honey had the hormone injection 8 days ago. Without it, the doctor said she might live 2 weeks. With it, we don't know... He said if she survives this month, we'll go from there. He gave her a better than 50% chance of surviving this month. We have an appointment to see him on the 26th of June, at which time she may need another treatment, or we may be able to wait a couple of months for another treatment.
     
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  8. KikisGirls

    KikisGirls BYC Fan Premium Member Project Manager

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    Glad to hear she is doing better.
    Thank you for the update!
     
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  9. biophiliac

    biophiliac Chillin' with the Peeps Premium Member

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    Thanks very much for taking the time to describe her treatment. Best wishes to you and Henny-Honey!
     
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  10. rebrascora

    rebrascora Overrun With Chickens

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    Hi

    Can I ask, how you know it is ascites and not internal laying or both. If it is just ascites, simple draining off of the fluid will usually give immediate relief which should give her several months of quality of life before it may need draining again, although there is usually an underlying reproductive problem that causes the ascites as you are aware.

    If it is internal laying then I can see how the hormone treatment will work. I had a 3 yr old hen with this problem, which I first noticed last summer, when she started walking with a wide gait. When I examined her, her abdomen was really swollen but hard rather than the water balloon ascites I had experienced with another hen. She was eating and drinking fine and my funds do not run to vets bills for chickens so I just observed. She went into moult in late summer and during the winter I saw a notable improvement in her condition, but late February, her comb reddened up and her belly started to swell again, so it was obvious that she had started ovulating again and the eggs were dropping into her abdominal cavity and pressure was building up. She lasted until April, when her quality of life deteriorated to the point that it was no longer sustainable. Unfortunately I didn't have the opportunity to do the post mortem examination of her that I had intended, due to unforeseen circumstances, but my experience would suggest that if you can get your hen through the summer with hormone treatment, she may actually do well through the winter without it because her reproductive system will be naturally resting.

    Best of luck with her

    Barbara
     
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