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Old 02-11-2010, 04:56 PM
JessLough JessLough is online now
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Unhappy Rascal has Insulinoma

This afternoon, right after I had finished eating lunch I heard a ferret making noises like they do when playing. So I figured oh cute, who is playing? I then got up to look, and saw only Rascal, so I figured this was weird. Rascal is my quiet boy. Then, he started convulsing, and puking I called 3 or 4 vets, and finally found one that would take me, that was not an emergency vet (would have paid their fees, but that would have been a lot more than I would like). So my cousin comes to pick me up, we rush to the vet, and find out that my little man has insulinoma. I knew having a 5 1/2 year old ferret with absolutely no health problems was too good to be true.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:44 PM
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Awwww Jess. ((((((((((((((Hugs))))))))))) for you and Rascal. Vibes coming your way.

What is the next step? Is there treatment for it?
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:45 PM
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(((((hugs)))))
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:48 PM
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I'm sorry I hope you were able to get him treated with something to make him feel better.

What do you do for that condition? I've never heard of it.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:50 PM
JessLough JessLough is online now
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thanks guys.

Insulinoma is pretty much reverse diabetes. There are tumors on his pancreas, causing too much insulin so not enough sugar in his bloodstream.

cp basically I just right now make sure he is eating, I have special food to give him if he is not eating, and if he seems to be going into an episode, corn syrup on his gums. It will progress, to the point where he needs medications. The only "cure" is surgery, although the tumors will just grow back, so really it just prolongs the disease, and at his age, the surgery will probably not work. There is a huge risk that he will not make it, and I would rather he live the rest of his life without going through surgery.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:53 PM
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Labyrinth Labyrinth is offline
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Aww, I'm sorry.. Insulinoma sucks

Sasha passed away from it at 9 months after diagnosis, but looking back I know I did not respond properly to a crash and she could've lived longer. Munky has had it for about 11 months now, and my vet thinks he has a very good chance of living another year with it.


To those that asked, insulinoma is a blood sugar issue. He will require medication every 12 hours for the rest of his life (which can possibly be as long as a couple more years with luck). It sucks, but it's not the end of the world.

ETA: I forgot some have been able to diet control, mine have always been put straight on medication.
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:56 PM
JessLough JessLough is online now
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Labyrinth View Post
To those that asked, insulinoma is a blood sugar issue. He will require medication every 12 hours for the rest of his life (which can possibly be as long as a couple more years with luck). It sucks, but it's not the end of the world.

Pretty much. Not to that point yet, but eventually he will need to be medicated for it.

May I ask how old your fert is now? I thought about surgery, but probably will not happen due to age and the price (they are calling me with an estimate tomorrow)
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Old 02-11-2010, 05:59 PM
Brattina88 Brattina88 is offline
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I'm sorry to hear that! That's one of my biggest fears with my 3! (((((hugs)))))))


cali - Insulinoma is a cancer of the pancreatic insulin producing cells. It's common in ferrets (especially marshall or other mass produced ferrets). The tumors are usually very small, but they produce an excessive amount of insulin which has the effect of driving the blood sugar (glucose) into the bodies cells at too rapid of a rate. Oh, and its really common in ferrets around 4-6 years of age (can happen younger or older, though). Its usually something that has to be managed. Prednisone is a common med.

(edit: whoops! we all posted at the same time lol)
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JessLough View Post
Pretty much. Not to that point yet, but eventually he will need to be medicated for it.

May I ask how old your fert is now? I thought about surgery, but probably will not happen due to age and the price (they are calling me with an estimate tomorrow)
Sasha (RIP) was a little over 4 years old when she was diagnosed, but she was also already adrenal and to this day I'm still convinced there was more wrong with her than we were able to find.

Munky (he is also adrenal) was diagnosed at a little over 5 years I think, and he just recently turned 6 years old. I also opted to pass on the surgery as my vet said it would most likely only prolong his life by 3 months or so and just wasn't worth it with the fatality rate of the surgery. My vet feels that it is likely Munky will pass from old age before he falls to either of his illnesses.
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Old 02-11-2010, 06:14 PM
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AllieMackie AllieMackie is offline
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My poor baby. But I'm glad it wasn't worse news than that. You can get prednisone in big batches and in flavors ferrets LOVE. The bad news is, I was told by the vet when we were considering pred for Palom that pred can cause severe immune deficiencies, due to it affecting the ferret's entire body.

But I babble. I am glad that Rascal is at least doing okay and has a diagnosis. <3
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