What's Your Opinion? Should I Find a New Vet?

Discussion in 'Dog Health Care' started by vmills, Aug 26, 2009.

  1. vmills

    vmills SimAlvin

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    Alvin has been with the same vet since we got him a few months ago. Recently, the vet did bloodwork for a neuter and called us with the bad news that Alvin might have a liver shunt. Needless to say, we were more than a litttle upset by this news.

    The vet then did a second blood test. These results were normal; liver enzymes were within acceptable levels.

    Today he did a third blood test and said the lab he uses admitted to possible calibration problems - all blood tests done on the day of Alvin's first blood test may have been wrong.

    I like this vet - he takes the time to explain issues and is conservative in his approach (hence the second blood test).

    What would you do in this case? Find another vet or stay with this one?

    By the way, if Alvin could voice an opinion, he'd say "Let's forget about the vet entirely. If you drag me through his door one more time to get stuck, I'm gonna run away at the first opportunity."
     
  2. bubbatd

    bubbatd Moderator

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    In cases like this I would go for a second opinion . I've only had had 2 clinics in over 50 yrs and with their 5 or 6 vets at each trusted them completely . Folks , it may cost more , but find a good clinic !!! Both of mine started in the 50s .
     
  3. Tailcreek

    Tailcreek New Member

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    If you really like the vet, then why not tell him about your concern regarding the incorrect lab results? Ask him how he plans to prevent this from happening in the future. Will they use another lab or has this lab taken steps to remedy the problem?
    Good vets are very tough to find...

    Jennifer
    Tailcreek Mastiffs in Alberta Canada - Home
     
  4. sheplovr

    sheplovr sheplovr

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    I would say that is a dumb thing to get the wrong results, that would lead me immediately to another vet for opinion and advice.

    I do not go to the vet only for Rabi 3 yr vac, spay or netuer, hip xrays, heart and thyroid testing by special vets as I am a Breeder. I do not use flea vials, and all the junk vets push onto people. I use natural remedies.:)
     
  5. Romy

    Romy Taxiderpy

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    It sounds like your vet is honest and open with you, as well as cautious with diagnosing a potentially huge problem with costly and invasive treatments. He did go back and triple check the blood test to make sure it was correct after all and shared with you the new info of the lab mistake. If you like them and they are taking good care of your dog, why change?
     
  6. vmills

    vmills SimAlvin

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    And the THIRD blood test was bad . . .

    Okay - an update on this blood test saga. The THIRD blood test showed the same issue as the first - high liver enzymes.

    The vet made his lab run the test again and requested the lab supervisor re-do the test. On the FOURTH try, the liver enzymes were with normal levels.

    I'm more than a little apprehensive about using this vet and his incompetent lab people. The last explanation was that the centrifuge was not working as it should.

    Now what do you think about staying with this vet?:mad:
     
  7. Ridgeback Guy

    Ridgeback Guy New Member

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    It sounds like your problem is not the vet, but the lab he uses. I'm sure there aren't labs sitting on every corner like McDonald's, so I would just bear with him, and ask if there is another lab that he could try. If not, have them do it again!

    Besides, whats to say the next vet isn't using the same lab?
     
  8. corgipower

    corgipower Tweleve Enthusiest

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    ^This.^

    I've used multiple vets who have all used the same lab. even vets in different parts of the country, the same lab was used.
     
  9. lizzybeth727

    lizzybeth727 New Member

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    It actually sounds to me like the vet is pretty good, making the lab redo and redo the tests.

    Maybe ask the vet to use a different lab?
     
  10. vmills

    vmills SimAlvin

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    OK - the vet's persistent

    The lab's incompetence is all very weird for my taste. I guess I could have had a vet who accepted the fact that a seemingly healthy dog was in medical distress (this is what the first blood tests indicated).

    I know this sorta scenario happens with people all the time. But still, I guess we really do need health reform, starting with getting accurate test results.
     
  11. Bigpoodleperson

    Bigpoodleperson Megan and Draco

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    He actually sounds like a really good vet. I would guess that no matter where you go in your town or even area, they would all use the same lab. I know in my area, there is one lab for a couple hundred mile radius from the lab. Perhaps ask if he can send it to one of the universitys for their opinion.
     
  12. GlassOnion

    GlassOnion Thanks, and Gig 'em.

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    There's likely nothing your vet can do about incorrect lab results other than ask them to run it again unless he has some in-house testing equipment (unless he's doing this all in-house to begin with, but it sounds like he's sending them off).


    Calibration errors happen once in a while, but it sounds like something is majorly off on the lab end. You shouldn't get highly fluctuating results in such a (what sounds like) short time, unless it's 'high' in just that it's out of the normal range; but who knows how far out of the range it is? Did he give you the values/show you the paper work?
     
  13. Doberdogs

    Doberdogs Living on Doberman Drive

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    Nothing wrong with a second opinion, ESP in this situation. In fact, when it comes to possible continuous health issues, I would say a second opinion is needed.
     
  14. stardogs

    stardogs Behavior Nerd

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    He's not charging you for the retests is he? If he is, *then* I'd seriously consider a second opinion, if not outright switching. If he's redoing them at his expense, then I'd stick with him, but maybe ask if he might be open to sending the blood to another lab the next time.
     
  15. GlassOnion

    GlassOnion Thanks, and Gig 'em.

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    If you go for a second opinion, then you need to find out which labs both clinics send their respective tests too. Or just have your vet send them to a different lab (which they can do). All our vet clinics around here send their stuff to TVMDL unless it's something specific that they can't cover. It's likely the same around there (not necessarily TVMDL but something like it).

    Alternatively, ask if the clinics can do in-house testing. You can get an idea of what the liver is doing through an Idexx machine, which some clinics rent from Idexx (or a similar company).

    Yah if he's charging you every time, maybe he's not as good as you think? That, to me, is the same as charging 'new client' fees and the ilk. Just a way to milk more money out of people.


    But there's a TON of labs that blood (or serum, rather) can be sent to to have it run. TVMDL is just one example. I'm sure your area/state has an equivalent.
     
  16. vmills

    vmills SimAlvin

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    I paid for blood tests 1 and 2. Tests 3 and 4 were freebies because the vet read the riot act to the lab. I'm going to ask if he's changing labs next week when Sir Simon gets a rabies shot.

    Don't you wonder how many other animals might have been affected? Whose animal might be in surgery right now because the lab screwed up.
     
  17. finder

    finder New Member

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    From your view point, it sounds like you have lost confidence in the vet.Two people cannot walk except they agree.i suggest change.
     
  18. vmills

    vmills SimAlvin

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    Hopefully, the Problem is Resolved

    Today I asked the vet to run another blood test at a second lab (for lab costs only). Turns out the vet had 2 other patients with high liver enzymes after tests at the original lab (these were also re-run). Since Alvin's last blood test, there have been 0 incidents of blood work with this issue.

    The vet is excellent, and I know many dog owners who use him. I'm not changing vets.
     
  19. colliewog

    colliewog Collies&Terriers, Oh My!

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    As several have said, it's common for most vets in an area to use a specific lab, so I don't think the second opinion is warranted. I would ask that the next time your vet does bloodwork that it be sent elsewhere.

    Also, I would ask for written proof that a re-calibration was performed on the equipment and an apology (in writing) from the lab for nothing more than self-satisfaction for what you've been through. :mad: If the vet won't ask for it on your behalf, ask for the name of the lab and the lab supervisor and request it yourself for your own 'peace of mind'. One calibration error is bad, two in that close of a time span is inexcusable in any industry, especially the medical field!!!!
     
  20. Kristy_Spca3

    Kristy_Spca3 New Member

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    I wouldn't change, I'd just maybe as to see the proof next time, or maybe get it sent elsewhere like many people have said. This is off topic, but I am planning to be a vet.
     

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