Question Dr. Krempels,
I have a situation I would just like to hear your thoughts on. We have a seven year old lop with severe otitis and have the difficult task of making a decision as to how to proceed. We understand the surgery to be very high risk ( there is evidence that the infection has spread to the skull), so even with removing the ear canal, it will not be a cure, but would make it more accessible to reach the skull with antibiotics. I am in no way asking you to make this difficult decision for me, but just wonder about your thought on this. Thank you for taking the time to read this.
Answer Dear Susanne,
It's pretty much impossible for me to make a recommendation, as every case of otitis is unique. If the condition could be made better by simply marsupializing the ear, then I'd go for that first. Ear canal ablation is a MAJOR surgery, and should be a last resort. (The surgeon who pioneered this in rabbits is, I'm told, no longer doing ablations because he found that they really didn't help in most cases.)
Have you considered trying dual-acting penicillin G/Benzathine injections? If the abscess is caused by bacteria sensitive to penicillin, this can be a real "miracle drug", though it can take a few weeks to resolve a very solid abscess.
Just some thoughts. I hope all goes well.
P.S. - Sorry for the delay. Allexperts site has been down more than up, and every time I have tried to log in for the last 10 days, it has given me a "try again later" message! They need to get better servers!
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Thank you for a thoughtful and informative answer.
I've lived with companion rabbits for more than 35 years, and consider them members of my family. I can answer any questions about the biology and health of rabbits, from the commonplace to the unusual. But please note:
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National House Rabbit Society (Board member)
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Warren Peace (Journal of the House Rabbit Society of Miami)
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