Bailey came in to see Dr Julian in March this year. His owner had watched him have an episode where he, all of a sudden went stiff and fell off the couch. When Bailey was examined, there were no visible abnormalities. So a blood test was taken to check his internal organ functions. The only abnormalities on his blood results were his platelet count was low.
A couple of days later Bailey came back to see us as he had another episode and was starting to breath more rapidly and he became more lethargic. Another blood test was taken. This time the blood test showed he had become anaemic and his platelet count was very low. Platelets are cells inside our blood which assist in clotting the blood. If you do not have enough platelets like Bailey, this will cause spontaneous bleeding. Bailey had spontaneous bleeding into his chest, causing laboured breathing as well as bleeding into his brain, causing seizures. In Bailey's case, his platelets were being destroyed by his own immune system.
Bailey was treated with medication to suppress his immune system. After starting treatment, Bailey's platelet count increased within 3-4 days and he was able to make it home from hospital just in time for his 10th birthday. Bailey will need to stay on medication to control his immune system for at least 3-6 months or possibly for the rest of his life. But at least Bailey is back to his normal self again. Happy Birthday Bailey from the team at Pascoe Vale Veterinary Hospital.