Sunday April 25, 2015.
Recurrent eye abscess.
The owner wanted the hamster home on the same day as the treatment of the abscess some 5 weeks ago. She disputed that I had advised her how to do post-discharge care. I had told her verbally to use a cotton bud tip to rub above and below the skin wound to express out the pus, daily. In this way, any residual pus would be let out and the abscess would not recur. She only put eye drops.
This educational video teaches vets how to handle this problem and to prevent the abscess from recurring.
A small skin incision heals too fast if the owner does not express the pus on the second day. There will be pockets of pus still inside the skin. So the abscess recurs. This video shows how an abscess is treated by me at Toa Payoh Vets. Isoflurane + oxygen gas anaesthesia is used here. The whole process of lancing, curetting, irrigating and draining the abscess takes around 5 minutes.
The hamster is OK and will be in-patient for 2 days.
On Day 2, I reviewed this gentle chubby hamster. I expressed more yellow pus from the incision wound. By inching out the residual pus, the wound can heal without another abscess popping out in the next week.
The owner phoned and her male friend came to check the hamster. She asked whether the hamster could go home. I said no. Hamsters are family members and so the lady owner did not want her in-patient but would not want to pay for a recurrent abscess.
POST DISCHARGE NURSING ADVICE IN WRITING.
The vet must let the owners wanting to bring the hamster home on the same day, they will have to bear the responsibility of post-discharge nursing and to pay in full should the hamster recur. This should be in writing to prevent any misunderstanding of the responsibilities of post-discharge care and much unhappiness in having to pay again for treatment.
This hamster stayed 2 nights in-patient and was cleared of pus on Day 3.
On Day 2, I could express pus from the closed wound.
On Day 3, more pus was expressed although the wound had closed (video). After that, I phoned the owner to bring her home. She should not have any recurring abscess within the next 2 weeks.