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Depo-medrol question.

March 27th, 2008, 08:24 AM
What exactly is the med suppost to be used for?

I was just at the vet with Zoe this morning. She has some scar tissue on her privates from her dog attacks (last attack in August 07). Sometimes it tends to bother her and she gets licking and biting , and it swells up and the whole works get really irritated. Last night she made it bleed so off to the vet first thing this morning.

So he cleaned her up, told me the usual don't let her lick, use the e-collar if she is adamant about cleaning it and he gave her a shot. I ask what it was, he said it's just a shot to relieve the swelling and redness, and off he went before I could say another word. I know he was busy, they were very nice to squeeze me in first thing this morning.

So I get looking at my bill and it says a shot of depo. I came home and looked at my other bills from previous trips for the same occurence, one late october, one in late December and then this one .....all three trips he treated her with Depo-medrol.

So is this normal to be treating her condition with this drug? I know my cat has had shots of this also for his obsessive grooming problem (twice a year he gets a shot to mellow him out), he also had a shot of it when I found out he is severly allergic to flea bites. So I am a little confused seeing the cat gets it for two totally different conditions and the dog gets it for her scar tissue.

Is there something else I can be treating her scars with instead of having to keep going back for a shot every few months? :confused:

March 27th, 2008, 08:56 AM
hi there.

my cat, patsy, receives a long-lasting shot of depo-medrol every june, as she suffers from seasonal asthma (in other words, something is in the air at the beginning of the summer season that she has an asthmatic reaction to). the shot works wonders for her!

i had a doc give her the short-acting version of this once (my regular vet was on vacation, so i had no idea it wasn't the same strength), and it wore off after a week. i was convinced she was dying as her asthma was the worst i've ever seen! i took her into my reg vet who had since returned to work. she read the chart, and realized what happened. she gave her the proper shot, and voila - almost instant results again. that was last year, and she hasn't needed another shot for her asthma since. i'm sure she'll need it again this june.

other than that, i'm not sure what all its uses are. i understand it's good for allergic reactions of all kinds (itching, swelling, wheezing, etc.).

tracy :cat:

March 27th, 2008, 09:16 AM
See that is what has me confused. With Amos (cat) the shot worked wonders for his allergy, so-so for his grooming condition.

Now for Zoe (dog) we keep going back every 1 1/2 months or so for another shot. It's scar tissue that is bothering her, not an allergy. He just puts an antiseptic on the tissue she has licked/chewed to the point of bleeding, tells me to not allow cleaning and gives her a shot of depo-medrol.

Is there something I can get for her to help ease when the scar tissue gets itchy or irritated? Not that she is too fond of anyone poking at her privates...its a three people or more job to sneek a peek when it is bothering her. The scars are in a pretty sensitive area, my goodness I could not imagine walking around with an itchy part like that, I would lose my mind. There has to be something better, with the shot its like she goes for a time not chewing, then bang right out of the blue she chews it so frantically it bleeds. There is no telling when the itch is going to start. Then I have a miserable dog.

March 27th, 2008, 09:17 AM
Depo-medrol is a long-lasting corticosteroid injection, which is used to suppress the immune system in cases where it's over-reacting to something, like for allergies or inflammation. Steroids have the potential for some pretty serious side effects and their use shouldn't be taken lightly. Here's everything you ever wanted to know about them:

March 27th, 2008, 09:25 AM
Thanks Sugarcatmom, you are such a helpful knowledgable person. That article just solidates my fear that my vet is over using this injection. We know the underlying problem.....why doesn't he give me something else to treat the problem?? Guess I have a phone call to make.

March 27th, 2008, 11:12 AM
My daughter had her cat into the vet for allergies and was given a shot of depo. Her vet would only give two shots, a month apart, that's it, no more due to the side effects.

March 27th, 2008, 11:37 AM
My Fagan has gotten these shots about every 2 months over the past 2 years, and unfortunately although they work great for his skin issues, he has suffered a side effect, luxating paetellas due to the depo weakening his joints. I have actually been lessening the frequency of the shots by using some natural remedies on a daily basis, but when it gets really angry there isn't much else that works.

Dr Lee
March 27th, 2008, 11:45 AM
Just wanted wanted to add in my :2cents:.

Depo medrol injections in cats can cause diabetes. Often this is transient, but not always. If steroid therapy is the to be used in cats, oral prednisolone is often considered to be good alternative. (make sure it is prednisoLOne and not prednisone). Prednisolone is better handled by cats.

Other options - hard to say without seeing the patient. Steroids are used to help reduce inflammation. If we are trying to help with scar tissue - there are not a lot of traditional medical options (probably why steroids are being used). Some possible ideas - physical therapy and K lasers. There may also be some holistic options.

A few questions: what happens without the steroids? Problems urinating? Dermatologic problems? :pawprint:

March 27th, 2008, 01:00 PM
Thank you Dr. Lee, but I am afraid that this thread got confused. I am asking about the depo-medrol for my dog. My vet continues to give her shots for scar tissue that flares up. My dog was attacked three times, and all three times her anus and vulva got torn and punctured. They had to sew part of the lip of her privates back to her body, it is this scar tissue that she continues to chew, she will actually grab the flap and pull because it is so aggravating. Then she licks it raw and makes it bleed.

The only thing my vet has given her to ease the aggravation is the depo-medrol. Three shots in the past 6 months. I am afraid that he is over admininstoring this drug and I am going to run into other problems because of it. I was looking to see what else I could be doing to ease the itcyness of the scar tissue to give her some relief.

Once again thank you very much for your time.

March 27th, 2008, 01:11 PM
hi there.

was just wondering - what about asking your vet for hydroxyzine pills for your dog? i take that for itch for my winter exzyma, and a friend of mine has a dog (black lab) who also takes it for itching (he has allergies that make his paws break out and itch badly). anyway, it takes away the itch so the affected area can heal.

just a thought!

tracy :thumbs up

Dr Lee
March 27th, 2008, 09:20 PM
hi there.

was just wondering - what about asking your vet for hydroxyzine pills...

Great idea!:lightbulb: There are many options for itching. There are also topical steroids such as cortisone cream or Genesis spray which may be used if the hydroxyzine does not help. Topical steroids are much safer as they penetrate topically and have minimal levels in the blood, brain, pancreas, etc...

Often multimodality is the key - use several different therapies so we can maximize effect and minimize the amount of each medication. :pawprint:

March 28th, 2008, 06:04 AM
thanks, dr. lee. glad i was able to contribute. you know, there's nothing worse than an itch or a burn - relief is a godsend! :cloud9: