After reviewing and thinking about Luella's strange symptoms, Jim thought it would be a good idea to have Luella's liver functions tested to see if there were some liver issues giving us these problems. Jim sent an email to our doctor to ask for the liver labs and also to get Luella's depakote levels tested. We haven't had a depakote level done since September. There really wasn't a need to have the levels tested since then because we haven't changed her depakote dose since then. Our doctor agreed to do the labs and called the orders in on Wednesday. I took Luella in Thursday morning to have blood drawn. Unfortunately our little beauty has awful veins so it took about three attempts before they were successful. :( On the plus side, the final poke didn't make Luella cry at all. She was actually laughing at the guy drawing her blood because he asked her if the kitty she was holding said "woof, woof"!!
So by yesterday afternoon we had the lab results. Luella's liver functions were good, the depakote levels were not. In September her level was around 101, ideal is 100, so that was about perfect and we didn't change her dose. Yesterday her level was 182!! Almost double of what it should be. There really is no explanation of why it would be so high. It baffled our doctor too. Depakote is not dosed based on weight, everyone metabolizes the drug differently, that's why you check levels and once you find a dose that gives you the right level, you're good. We started by dropping Luella's night time dose last night and we'll go back in Tuesday morning to have her level tested again. We'll probably need to reduce the dose even more but we'll see what we find out on Tuesday.
So in the meantime, we are actually going to stay on the clobazam since it's likely it was the depakote causing Luella's side effects. Since my last post we haven't seen much improvement with the sleep issues or her appetite. Yesterday and today were both liquid diets again. Her balance has gotten slightly better. The most improvement has been in her demeanor - she was so happy and playful all day today. Talking up a storm and smiling!! That was so great to see! It was so sad to see her just wanting to be held and not even wanting to play last week.
Tomorrow (Saturday) is 10 weeks seizure free - that was our last record - pray that we can keep on cruising!!
We feel our prayers were answered in getting us to the lab results we needed to see. Hopefully by making these other changes we will continue to see improvements. Thank you for everything! All the hugs, notes, emails... they mean so much, and especially the prayers! Our God is an awesome God and we know he listens.