J.C. Hardin, DVM
With any blunt force trauma, there are risks for several potentially life threatening conditions, often occurring on a delayed basis. Problems such as shock, delayed diaphragmatic hernia, spinal swelling, heart arrythmias, pneumothorax (collapsed lung) and blood clot migration (thromboembolism) may all occur one or more days after the intial trauma and cannot always be predicted on initial diagnostics. The first estimate represents the doctor's best recommendations based on your pet's current condition. Declining one or more services may adversely affect our ability to successfully diagnose and treat your pet. Anesthesia and surgery are often needed for x-rays and/or injury repair, but added anesthesia risks occur for the above reasons. Referral to a specialist may be needed for care of many types of injuries that occur after blunt force trauma. As diagnostics are run and obervations are made over time (response or lack of response to treatments attempted) the above plan may need to be modified accordingly. Prognosis is always guarded for several weeks after any blunt force trauma. Most patients are advised to receive pain medication, IV fluids (either crystaloid or colloid), radiographs of the thorax, abdomen, and pelvis, one or more hematocrits to monitor for internal bleeding, and hospitalization. Oxygen is often supplemented initially on arrival.
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