Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going on h

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Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going on h

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:05 am

Please tell me how to attach videos, I need someone to see this as I've never seen a beardie do this along all my research online over the past 4 weeks.

Firstly, im well educated in set up and I know everything is on point, his strip UV bulb is 6-8inchs from him and a reptisun 10.0, his basking bulb is 100w and Basking temp sits at around 37-40c most of the day, and cooler end around 28-30c, we were using tile as flooring but I switched to kitchen roll as he didn't seem to like it. I have recently taken the kitchen roll out just for time being as he has been unwell and not moving around much or pooing.

4 weeks ago I thought he had a seizure, which was later suggested a possibly stroke and I fear he has suffered long term neurological damage. He didn't eat "right" for a few days beforehand but I put it down to mid shed mardiness. There was no obvious trigger, I actually woke up to it happening, approx 30-60mins after his light would have turned on, his beard and half his body went blacker than ever, he was arching his head/spine back and kind of trying to move around but not getting anywhere, he kept flicking his head back and his eyes looked different, he looked so scared and in pain, I tried to pick him up to comfort him but he tried to get away, this is when I realised his limbs were pretty much paralysed, the whole thing didn't last very long and I set about finding an exotic specialist vet.

I found one around 15 miles away who agreed for me to get him seen right away, at this point he couldn't walk. They did tests and kept him in overnight, they gave him morphine as he still looked in pain, very hunched, and this relaxed him by the evening of the first day he could move his back legs but not his arms, but the next morning they bathed him (which he's always hated) and this gave him the push to use the front legs and paralysis has not been an issue since. They did blood tests, all normal, fecal tests, no parasites, full body x-ray showed healthy bones and no sign of MBD, full physical examination and they couldn't find anything wrong. They prescribed injection antibiotics for a possible infection which they believe could have caused pain and seizuring, as well as vitamin booster and pain relief too orally. I had much much trouble administering the oral meds, he is not like another dragon! He will not lick water or food off his nose, he would not let me force his mouth open, I tried all sorts of tricks and methods and I really did not want to hurt him, he didn't appear in pain when I got him home and they vet said he had no deficiencies so I figured the pain relief and vitamins were not worth the extra stress for him. I administered the antibiotics as stated and it took 15 days to complete the course, there was no real change. He didn't eat for nearly 4 weeks, we tried force feeding baby food/ homemade smoothie slurries, no interest, lots of different types of salad and veggies, which he usually loves, no interest, live food, absolutely no interest. He also spent a lot of time in his cool side and I actually had to keep moving him to his basking spot in order for him to perk up a bit, and weirdly, kept facing the corner, he would stay there all day if I let him, which he's never done (possibly due to neurological damage?), He tolerated me getting him out to handle everyday but before all this he would run to my hands when I opened the door, and he would run around the house happily and snuggle on sofa with me to watch TV, nonenof this anymore he would just sit on me with eyes closed. He's lost weight so is not brumating and on Sunday morning I actually said to my partner I think we need to call the vets tomorrow and think about his quality of life..

Well he must of heard that cuz Sunday morning he pooped out of nowhere, was more alert, and actually ate loads of food!! I was. Over the moon, he went to basking spot himself, Monday was much the same but not hungry, Tuesday very hungry again no issues, pooped again in bath, Wednesday and Thursday ate a small amount, but today (Friday) he's had another episode much the same as 4 weeks ago!! I managed to catch some of it on camera, and I feel this one was not as severe (but definitely still painful and scary for him) I wanted to hold him but again he tried to get away as best he could when I opened his doors and I didn't want to cause extra stress. He's finally stopped with the twitching, it's not like an MBD twitch it's like every 5_10 seconds he would tense his whole body for a second then relax again.. he isn't black anymore and I have moved him to the warm end on a little towel, I think he is still able to move his legs, but he doesn't want to, looks tired as you would expect a human to be after a seizure. But I'm not convinced it was a seizure?!
I really want people to watch the videos and see if anyone else has experienced this and lend some advice. I'm more concerned now that it is not a one off

I have called my vet again this morning and I'm waiting for the exotic specialist to call back but I really can't afford another £400 for test to come back normal and treatment that I did not feel helped at all..

I feel it's unfair to keep him alive if this is his life now, seizuring then not eating for 3.5 weeks then being great for 3-4 days then repeating the cycle.. what is going wrong here?

Also he is not old, he is around 4.5 years.
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby KarrieRee » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:10 am

Please post video or pics of the dragon https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploads/
click on XIMG at the top of the message box then click on the pic it should post - you can upload a video from youtube and post the link
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:29 am

KarrieRee wrote:Please post video or pics of the dragon https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploads/
click on XIMG at the top of the message box then click on the pic it should post - you can upload a video from youtube and post the link
Karrie



Thanks Karrie I'm uploading videos now. I wanna say a warning for anyone who might click it may be distressing to watch. I wanted to hold him through it but he really freaked more when I opened the glass doors up and I was worried about causing more stress or pain.

He has moved since so there is no limb paralysis like the first time this happened. Will post links in next comment.
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:38 am

Trigger warning for links - may cause distress, something seizure or stroke related happening here to my beardie.

A couple of minutes after it first started.. I tried to put my hand in to move him and he completely freaked so I thought better to leave him and stay with him throughout..
https://youtu.be/exxHekDFtXc

More.. would the beard movements suggest he is struggling to breath? He made no noises during the whole event.. https://youtu.be/u8yoeR1gHNY

Here he has his tongue out and I'm not sure if he bit it.. there was no blood.. you can also see how when he tenses he's very stretched out.. https://youtu.be/RbI_kCLwZ0o

Just included this as his mouth is open for a while in this one https://youtu.be/PnXUMU0LWEk

This is after the main part is over and he is just tensing every 5-10 seconds.. after this I moved him to warm end of Viv and he slowly relaxed and went back to normal colour, looking very tired. https://youtu.be/PnXUMU0LWEk
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:46 am

[Click image to enlarge]
[Click image to enlarge]


Now he appears fairly back to normal, a few hours later. Not interested in food today but not as weak and sleepy as he was last time...
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby KarrieRee » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:49 am

Your reptisun 10.0 is this a T 8 or a T 5?
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:53 am

T8! X
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:57 am

I know seizures alwaya seem to point to MBD but he's had all the tests and x-rays and it's all come back normal and no deficiencies. I don't know what to do :(
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby AHBD » Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:06 am

Poor guy, that is heartbreaking to watch and I know it's much more so for you. What a beautiful boy + beautiful tank. Animals can develop strange disorders like humans so I don't know if testing will reveal anything else. You might see how frequent this happens and how much he is suffering over time and determine if his quality of life is too bad + he's suffering or if he is like a human that has seizures but if not too frequently they still have some enjoyment in life. The outcome will help you down the road to decide if euthanasia is the best thing or if he gets along on his " good " days enough to keep him alive.
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby CooperDragon » Fri Aug 28, 2020 1:05 pm

He looks good with a nice bright beard and holding himself up well in the last photos. The full body seizures must be exhausting. I haven't seen anything quite like that with a dragon but have with a human. I wonder if it's something like epilepsy. When he goes into the seizures I would try to make him as comfortable as possible and try to keep him from falling or hitting anything. Since the blood tests came back not showing any deficiencies, it makes me think this is a neurological issue of some sort. My other thought is maybe muscular dystrophy, but I don't see signs of muscle weakness or things like arms and legs tensed and curled inward outside of the episodes.
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby Drache613 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 11:08 pm

Hello,

Poor poor thing, that has to be exhausting for him, as well as painful. I am sorry he is going
through this. I am not sure it is a seizure but a gigantic muscle spasm for some reason. A
stroke could definitely have caused an initial behavior like that but don't think it would be a
continual issue such as what keeps happening.
He hasn't been exposed to any toxic substances that you know of?
Do you have a copy of the blood test you could post?
Can you think of anything that might be initiating this type of problem, like him getting too hot,
or is something causing stress which would be the catalyst for this?
I am so sorry, I will see if I can do some research, too.
He is definitely a terrific looking dragon!
You could consider trying some CBD oil. It has been showing a lot of promise for help with
seizures, muscle tremors, etc. I can help direct you with using it. As far as I know, it is safe to
use for reptiles. I have a friend who started using it on her female who had tremors for just
unknown reasons, but it definitely isn't as severe as your boy's case. It might be worth a try,
to see if it helps out.

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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby Drache613 » Sat Aug 29, 2020 11:18 pm

Hello,

Any updates on your guy for us today? I was thinking about him earlier & just wondering how
he was doing.

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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby jazmatazxo » Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:50 am

Drache613 wrote:Hello,

Any updates on your guy for us today? I was thinking about him earlier & just wondering how
he was doing.

Tracie


Thanks Tracie, cooperdragon and AHBD! These 3 previous comments have reassured me a lot and I'm going to monitor him as much as I can and keep a record of it moving forward.

This episode must not have been as bad as the first as he seems happy now, not back to normal, but holding himself up well, moving around a lot more and he is eating and pooping, the poop has been a bit slimy compared to before this ever happened, but I'm not too concerned about that, just glad to see poops! He seems slow when he eats, he's not keen on eating out of his bowl, he has started getting on his log and looking right at me with mouth wide open and then takes food from tongs very happily, I'm trying to get him to work towards taking food from the floor and getting him moving a bit for his food but it's a slow process, but again I'm just glad he is eating something as it was so awful when he didn't eat at all for so long. He doesn't appear in any pain but he's not been very active in mornings and then very active later at night so I have adjuster his timer by 2 hours so it now comes on around 9am and goes off at 1030pm instead of 7am-830pm, I still have to move him from cool to hot end in the mornings to get him going but I'm hoping he starts to do this himself soon. I am worried about the seizures / full body spasms becoming more frequent but this episode has reassured me that he could still have good life quality as he has recovered so much quicker than the last time.

I have asked the vets to provide me copy of his blood tests, x-ray and fecal results, but they are only open for emergencies over weekend so will chase this Monday and post here for people to have a look at incase the vet missed something.

Thank you so much for the help.
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby AHBD » Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:53 pm

Well that sounds a little more hopeful , just keeping an eye on how things go and take it 1 day at a time. It seems like he's slow but stable right now and that's O.K for now. :)
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Re: Seizure? Stroke? Please help me figure out what's going

Postby Drache613 » Mon Aug 31, 2020 11:21 pm

Hello,

That does sound a bit more promising!
I hope that he starts to do better slowly but surely, bless him.
Poor thing, try to keep him comfortable as much as you can. I am sure he is happy so hopefully
you can get him stabilized.
Keep us posted on his progress. :D
Were you considering getting the CBD oil a try?

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