Hi Belinda,

>    I'll give her the
> benefit of the doubt, but what exactly is she basing her
> information that FeLV+'s have such a bad experience with
> using epogen, because I have not heard of any studies that
> have been done on this to bear that out and if there is one
> I would like the reference so I can look into it and give it
> to my vet.

I think she was basing it on her experience using Epogen to treat cats with 
leukemia.  I could be wrong on that.  She talked about how she has seen a case 
or two where it helped despite there being no reason it should but she saw far 
more cases where irreversible damage was done and the cat was actually worse 
off than before the Epogen.  She is fine with me trying LTCI or some of the 
stuff that she agrees doesn't pose a risk but she definitely feels that Epogen 
can do harm.  I don't know what I think yet, just relaying her thoughts.  The 
one thing she said that I can't stop thinking about is that these cats are 
immune compromised and a lot of these treatments are introducing foreign 
substances into their body which can alter an already very delicate balance.  
So much to think about...
> Amy never be afraid to say anything on this list, all I am
> saying is that in my experience your vets information is
> incorrect about the use of epogen.   Both
> from other people experiences that I know of that have
> FeLV+'s and from my vets experiences.

Definitely worth knowing!  The more info I have the better.  I just feel like 
sometimes this list is pretty hard on vets.  I genuinely feel this one is 
treating my cat like she would treat her own.  She's not my vet so I have no 
reason to try to defend her.  I went to Cornell for a 2nd opinion to see if 
there is anything else I could possibly try to save Wolfie.  If anything I 
would think they would be telling me to try one thing after another because 
they would be making a whole lot more money off me than they are now.  I really 
think this vet is trying to help me give Wolfie the best quality of life for 
the longest time possible.

> And there isn't a lot of information out there because most
> vets won't even try it and I am not lying when I say most
> vets are terrified of epogen in general and have no idea how
> to use it because in vet school they are taught that 30% or
> better of cats using it will have an adverse reaction to
> it.  That is old information and most vets who actually
> use it on a regular basis, mostly on CRF cats say that
> number is closer to 10% or less and only after 5 months or
> longer of use.

I'll have to inquire more about her experience using it and what she is basing 
her info on.
> And everyone here knows I have no love for Cornell, their
> information about FeLV had always been outdated and in my
> opinion inaccurate.  And years ago when most vets knew
> little to nothing about FeLV, their outdated information
> caused many positive, healthy cats their lives since they
> were then the only veterinary site with the most info out
> there about FeLV+, no matter it was inaccurate.

I wasn't aware of that.  They were very receptive to helping my cat and never 
once gave me the impression that he should be treated any different than any 
other cat with any other issue.  

> > *Secondary viremia*, a later stage characterized by
> persistent infection of the bone marrow and other tissue. If
> FeLV infection progresses to this stage it has passed a
> point of no return: the overwhelming majority of cats with
> secondary viremia will be infected for the remainder of
> their lives.
> It says it is to the point of no return but *ONLY the
> majority of cats* will remain infected for the remainder of
> their lives, doesn't add up, if it is to the point of no
> return then *ALL of those cats* would be infected the
> remainder of their lives.  Guess they got to cover
> their butts in case a cat does fight off secondary
> viremia.  I have heard of one cat that did but have no
> proof so can't say it has or hasn't happened.

I see where that statement can be confusing.

> In my opinion because they won't spend the money to do
> those tests, but if you talk with many people using one or
> another of these treatments most are having good results, so
> since there isn't scientific evidence because no studies
> have been done, well I personally will go with people with
> positives that have experience using these types of
> treatments, but if you tell anyone at Cornell that, I'm
> pretty sure they will poo poo it and tell you it is a waste
> of your time and money.

Actually she was fine with me trying anything other than Epogen.   However she 
presented me several studies on interferon and several other options that 
showed no benefit in the treated group.  We discussed Wolfie's  quality of life 
and decided that I can't mess with a good thing when there is not one study 
that shows these things help.  I posted to this group to see if anybody has 
been able to save a cat with nonregenerative anemia using any of the treatments 
ever discussed.  I never got one response saying yes.  I wanted there to be 
something, anything that might save him.  I'll always hope.

> *And this is my way of thinking and only my opinion.* 
> If my furkid has something that IS going to kill them if I
> do nothing, *or if what I am trying isn't working*, but
> there is something I can try that may work ... I am going to
> try it.  If the options are for sure death and possible
> life, I'm going for the possible life, the out come is going
> to be the same if it doesn't work, but if there is a 1%
> chance it may work, I'm going for that 1% chance.  And
> thank god my vet knows me well enough to know that. 
> Now if she strongly feels that what I want to do is going to
> hurt my furkid she will argue with me but if she can't
> convince me, she knows I will go somewhere else to find a
> vet that will work with me.  If she can convince me
> then I won't do it.
I agree with this but Wolfie is not in crisis yet.  He's been stable and happy 
for the last 6 months since diagnosis.  He's eight years old and has been 
positive since I rescued him several years ago.  So I need to be sure that 
anything I try isn't going to send him into crisis mode.  I want every minute I 
can have with him.
> So I am sorry if I am coming off so strongly but if I can
> save one life because of the mistakes I made with Bailey it
> is worth it to me.

No I get that.  I just feel like sometimes people on this board judge rather 
harshly.  I felt like you thought I was being foolish for not trying Epogen 
despite this vet's warnings.  My gut, though, tells me that I don't want to try 
it either.  
> No vet is right 100% of the time and anyone who thinks they
> are is asking for trouble, my vet was wrong about the
> pancreatitis and it isn't the first time she has been wrong,
> does it upset me, yes, but it also upsets me that I didn't
> insist we do the pancreatitis test because in my gut I knew
> it was a very good possibility.

My vet has been wrong too and so have I, that's why I took Wolfie 2.5 hours to 
Cornell to get another opinion.

Thanks for taking the time to tell me about your experience with Epogen.  I do 
take it all into consideration when trying to decide what's best for Wolfie.



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