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Old 02-09-2012, 08:46 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Potassium Bromide

We've got an appointment with the vet tomorrow. I might have to put him on some kinda meds.

I see that 20% of dogs develop liver damage from Phenobarb so that wouldn't be my first choice.

Has anyone here ever had any experience with using Potassium or Sodium Bromide?
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Old 02-09-2012, 08:53 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I have a friend in the Afghan Hound world who has a dog who has seizures. I had told her that our Chalumeau had very occasional seizures and my daughter (Meau's technical owner) doesn't want to put her on phenobarbital for seizures that happen 3 or 4 times a year - if that... My friend talked with her vet about substituting potassium bromide and here is a portion of the email she sent to me regarding that...

"I forgot to mention that Joseph’s blood work came back just fine and the levels of phenol in his blood is very minute. I had extensive discussions with two vets now and both feel that this is a much better path for Joseph than the other Potassium Bromide as that has many more consequences and takes other vitals off course.
So, since his liver and other organs are fine and doing well and he is OK on a very tiny dose of Pheno I will leave him where he is for now. The vets suggested to try to remove him slowly from the drug in about a year and see how he does. I’m all for that."


I don't know that there's a GOOD alternative - you have to try to find the lesser of all evils and then just stay on top of regular blood work to make sure organs aren't being damaged...

Good luck!

Barb
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Last edited by plumcrazy; 02-09-2012 at 10:52 AM. Reason: correct the name of the drug. Duh!
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Old 02-09-2012, 08:58 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yes, while I was still in high school we had an epileptic sheltie. She was put on Potassium Bromide (KBr) for several years until it no longer controlled her seizures. She did very well on it while it worked, not much about her changed, behavior-wise.

Then we had to start adding phenobarbitol and everything started to go downhill. Eventually the dose was so high she became a zombie, slept all the time, was always hungry, still the seizures were barely controlled. She never did have any liver issues. Eventually, it was a series of seizures that killed her.
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Old 02-09-2012, 03:59 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Thanx for the input. I suppose that if 20% develop liver problems then there's 80% who don't, eh? So it's worth considering.

I've got the results of blood tests done in April of 2011 for the vet to look at. They should be able to rule out thyroid from them. Probably more blood tests tomorrow.

Since last Summer the frequency has gone from once a month to once every two weeks. But then he's had two in the last two days.

I never really wanted to medicate him . . . and this is not yet cluster events . . but still, maybe time to get a little more serious abt this.
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Old 02-09-2012, 04:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Keep lookin' for help. I'd try lotsa' other stuff.
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Old 02-09-2012, 04:59 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Potassium Bromide is safer for the liver and is what is used for dogs with impaired livers and seizures. You can go the more homeopathic route with Taurine. Eve had seizures for a bit but I think it was more related to her prior liver impairment and toxins in her body. I havent seen any seizures for more than a year, but she also no longer has liver impairment.

Here is some info:
Taurine
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Old 02-10-2012, 04:08 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Thanx, Lady.

I've been all over that Guardian Angels site in the last couple of days. It's certainly the most informative of all of them dealing with this problem. Hadn't seen the Taurine link yet tho.

It gives me sumthin' else to ask the vet abt today.
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Old 02-10-2012, 03:53 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Well we're back from the vet's. Blood work and all.

All present functions are fine according to today's results. She also had a look at all his old records . . . including blood results from 11 months ago.

Of course she recommends Phenobarbitol. 'Coz she knows it will work.

She prefers KBr as a supplement *if necessary* to the Phenobarb. If we take that route she would like to see blood tests a couple of times a year. Probably forever, I guess...

Oh well, CB. Suck it up and quit pouting!! Ya gotta do what it takes to keep yr boy goin', eh?
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Old 02-10-2012, 09:04 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I am of the same feelings as your vet. I would go with the phenobarb. It works really well. There is an adjustment period where dogs can be either hyper or sluggish getting used to the drug. After that they should be back to normal. Yes, you must do bloodwork for liver values and check the phenobarb level in the blood every 6 months minumum for lifelong maintence. If my dog had seizures, I would use phenobarb. I have personally worked with tons of dogs who never had an issue with the phenobarb for Years!
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Old 02-10-2012, 10:09 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I have a question for you to ask your vet.

Would adding milk thistle to his meds help at all?

Read this when you get a chance, please.

Milk Thistle - What You Need to Know
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