When we last left Slewpy’s Star in this excerpt from the book Equine ER by Leslie Guttman, the Thoroughbred had entered the hospital with severe pleuropneumonia. Today, vets try desperately to save her.
Slewpy’s Star was at Rood & Riddle for a month. She thrombosed her jugular vein (when blockage in the vein occurs due to blood clotting), and IV access wasn’t possible; medication such as antibiotics had to be given orally. She had to be monitored to be sure she was drinking enough to stay hydrated. The festering fluid in her chest Ð full of dead scar tissue, bacteria, pus Ð was continually drained, and with round-the-clock treatment she improved enough to go home. Yet after a month, she started to worsen and came back.
Despite two visits to the hospital, Slewpy was stlll struggling.
At Rood & Riddle the second time, Dr. Brett Woodie did a thoracotomy, making an incision in her chest; an endoscope was inserted, and more debris-filled fluid flushed out.
Treatment was helping considerably, but the infection wasn’t gone yet. Chronic inflammation was producing the scar tissue in her chest, the more scar tissue that was created, the harder it was for her to breathe and the harder it was for cells that would handle the invading bacteria