Ebony, she has been diagnosed with a very rare congenital disease called portosystemic shunt (PSS), or congenital hepatic portosystemic shunting.
Simple word, it is a congenital vascular abnormality where the blood flow in the hepatic portal system has enter the liver as, Instead, it diverts through another blood vessel, by passing the liver and directly entering the systemic circulation.
As a result, the animal is unable to undergo normal synthesis and metabolism within the liver. This condition leads to elevated blood ammonia levels, resulting in hyperammonemia. The clinical manifestations of this condition are as follows: the severity of the neurological toxicity symptoms of hyperammonemia parallels the degree of enzymatic deficiency. In other words, the more severe the enzyme deficiency and the earlier the onset, the more severe the symptoms. Symptoms and signs are closely related to brain dysfunction. Typically, the animal appears normal at birth but develops symptoms a few days later after consuming protein-containing diets, such as milk. The symptoms include anorexia, vomiting, rapid breathing, drowsiness, and rapid progression to deep coma, often accompanied by seizures. Physical examination may reveal hepatomegaly and increased or decreased muscle tone. In childhood-onset cases, symptoms are usually milder and occur intermittently. Acute hyperammonemia manifests as vomiting, neurological and psychiatric symptoms such as ataxia, confusion, anxiety, irritability, and aggressive behavior. It can lead to drowsiness or even coma and can also manifest as anorexia and headaches. Chronic hyperammonemia mainly presents as progressive cerebral degenerative symptoms and can be accompanied by poor growth and intellectual disability. It is a congenital intrahepatic portosystemic shunt. After multiple examinations and consultations with several doctors who have reviewed its reports, they only informed that it cannot be cured. The condition can be managed through dietary therapy and medication. Ebony life will definitely not be as long as others ordinary cats and dogs, and it may even be as short as two to three years. However, we will still make an effort to accompany it through until the final stage of her life.
From : Volunteer～Joelle
From : 義工~Joelle