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Epileptic GSD Ephiphen side effects

Discussion in 'Dog Health and Nutrition' started by Worried GSD owner, May 22, 2018.


  1. Worried GSD owner

    Worried GSD owner PetForums Newbie

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    My GSD is 14 months old and just having her second season. She had a fit last monday (scariest moment of my life) so took her to the vets they ran the usual tests no answers. Told me to just keep my eye on her and see if she had anymore fits.

    Yesterday she had two more. Was prescribed Ephiphen and sent home. 1 hour after giving her the tablet she was VERY DROWSY then had 3 more fits repeatedly 1 after the other. So of course I have taken her straight back to the vets where they have kept her in overnight for monitoring. I have picked her up around 2 hours ago and she still seems very dazed and confused. Vets have reassured me to just keep an eye on her. But keep her on the meds.

    I suppose my question is has anyone else been through this? Do the side effects ease? Should I still give her this tablet? Im really scared this may trigger another attack one last thing too.. the vet seems to think she doesn't know she is having these fits but why does she scream all the way through them like she is in agony??
    PLEASE HELP.
     
  2. lullabydream

    lullabydream PetForums VIP

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    Am I not out of the loop with this but didn't want to read and run.

    In my experience with my own dog with epilepsy was that it took time for epiphen to make a difference and get the right dosage.

    My dog was unsettled after seizures when he had several at a time and it was waiting if out.

    I would carry on medicating.

    My own dog made vocal grunts whilst having seizures not screaming...and definitely lost consciousness. So clearly an epileptic seizure.

    There is a site called canine epilepsy guardians that may help you identify the seizure better. If your dog is screaming I am wondering if it's more a partial seizure but I have no clue about these to be honest.
     
  3. Worried GSD owner

    Worried GSD owner PetForums Newbie

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    Thankyou so much for your reply. I have now given her the medication and she seems to have slept of the drowsiness that occurred last night. Thankyou for the advice I will take a look
     
  4. lullabydream

    lullabydream PetForums VIP

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    You are welcome

    Epilepsy is horrid in the fact there is very little you can do, just sit it out so to speak.

    I think there is newer line medications now to treat epilepsy. I have no idea if they are better or not.

    If your dog is insured you can get a specialist referral to find the cause to rule out other factors of why your dog is having seizures, or if you have the money too. I don't know the prices though.
     
  5. Our Pets Health

    Our Pets Health PetForums Junior

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    Epiphen can definitely cause sedation, wobbliness, an increased appetite and thirst when started but these effects tend to go away after a few days on treatment. Unfortunately it also takes up to a couple of weeks before the levels become stable in the blood so a full effect might not be seen until then. There is a newer medication (pexion) that can be used to control seizures. It works about as well as epiphen (some dogs will respond better to one compared to the other), reaches it's full effect faster although dose adjustments may be needed before it controls seizures, and is quite a lot more expensive than epiphen. There are also other drugs that can be added if seizures are not well controlled although the majority will do well on just one of these drugs.
    you might find this article on what to do when your dog has a seizure helps and it also links to a summary of causes of seizures
     
    Stephen Furby and leashedForLife like this.
  6. JulieNoob

    JulieNoob PetForums Member

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    Do please also research milk thistle tablets - over time epiphen will cause liver damage and the milk thistle will help to counter this by supporting the liver. I lost my GSD to liver damage caused by her epilepsy meds.
     
    leashedForLife likes this.
  7. bird

    bird PetForums VIP

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    Epiphen takes at least 3 weeks to get into the system, bloods will show if it’s at the correct levels and may need increasing (all dogs metabolise the meds differently) epiphen will/can make your dog drowsy, wobbly, more hungry and drink more. The hunger and thirst are the two symptoms that have not gone in my dog (on the plus side he’s not as fussy as he was)

    Regular blood tests will show the function of the liver, introducing milk thistle will cleanse the liver but it can also cleanse it of the epiphen. So don’t do it without a vets guidance.

    If your dog is having more than one fit in 24hrs it’s possible that even after the epiphen is at the correct level, another medication (possibly bromide) will be introduced, don’t worry many dogs that cluster fit are on two types of meds (mine included)

    Look into the food too, although not proven, lower carbs and food without Rosemary or Sage seem to be the route to travel, although be alert to the fat content in some of them.

    Research (it’s a mine field) some of it can be scary some WTF and snippets of good info, talk more with your vet, and if you find they’re off hand with you talk to another even if that means changing practices

    Also make a note of date and time of fits (is there any pattern to them) keep diet consistent be careful of salt in “scraps”
     
    #7 bird, May 24, 2018
    Last edited: May 24, 2018
    leashedForLife likes this.
  8. Maria Hare

    Maria Hare PetForums Newbie

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    I have a seven year old Bassett and she started having fits about a year ago she is on epiphen one twice daily, she has had a 3 minute fit since having med but I do find she is very sleepy most off the time and drinks a lot.
     
    leashedForLife likes this.
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