View Full Version : Buddy and OSU PSOM Study (Long)

23rd September 2007, 06:41 PM
Some of you may remember I mentioned a couple months ago we were taking Buddy to Ohio State University Veterinary Hospital, to participate in a study of Primary Secretory Otitis Media (PSOM) in Cavaliers. For those of you who do not know, PSOM is a condition, similiar to "glue ear" in human children, in which mucous/fluid fills the middle ear cavity where air should be. Right now the most accurate way to diagnose PSOM is by CT Scan (or MRI). The American Cavalier King Charles Spaniel Club Health Foundation is sponsoring a study by Lynette Cole, DVM at OSU to explore less expensive ways to diagnose PSOM.

Buddy had his preliminary screening on Thursday when he was seen by a neurologist, a cardiologist and a dermatologist. On Friday they did a CT Scan, some other tests and when PSOM was confirmed, he had surgery, a Myringotomy, to flush his middle ears, and then a repeat CT Scan to confirm they had gotten most, if not all, of the fluid. Part of the study included hearing tests. Buddy's hearing was diminished, more on the left than the right, and the left did improve with the removal of the fluid/mucous (he did have a threshold of 60 db. and post-surgery it is 30 db).

Dr. Cole was wonderful, very careful to explain what they were going to do and what to expect now. They in fact do not know very much about the recurrence of PSOM after a Myringotomy, so we will need to watch for signs and symptoms carefully. They did find Buddy is very mildly hydrocephalic which should not be an issue or causing any problems. They also found moderate lower (but not upper) cervical pain, which we will need to continue to watch. The CT Scan did not show anything to suggest Syringomyelia (SM), but it is not definitive for SM so it does not rule out that SM is present. The only symptoms he has had to date could be either PSOM or SM (some minimal, but not compulsive, neck scratching, and occasional single "yelps" which most likely are related to the cervical pain, which may or may not be related to PSOM and/or SM)). We are going to watch and see if these, such as they were, are now diminished with the treatment for PSOM and if not, we will discuss whether we need to do an MRI for SM. My inclination right now is that unless the symptoms worsen significantly we will not do an MRI but would try medications to see if they provide relief (but that is down the road).

One very good thing - we got an A+ cardiac report. We had excellent cardiac health clearances for the dam and sire and the grand dams and sires, so I have to say I was not surprised, but was still relieved, that the cardiologist heard nothing, no murmur and no click . Dr. Cole said Buddy is the first Cavalier in her study who has been totally negative. She was so surprised she asked the cardiologist to double check.

If you have a Cavalier whom you think may have symptoms of PSOM and are within a day's drive of Columbus, Ohio, please consider participating in Dr. Cole's study. There is a charge for the first day's screening which amounted to about $200.00, and the cost of staying in a hotel, but the testing and the surgery, if needed, on the second day, are covered by the study grant funds. You may learn something like I did to help your Cavalier and also help address a health issue of concern to all Cavalier lovers. Here is the link to the information about the study and how to contact Dr. Cole about participating: http://ackcsccharitabletrust.org/research/psom.htm. If you have any questions and want to ask them privately, feel free to e-mail me.

Cathy T
23rd September 2007, 06:50 PM
Phyllis - thank you so much for this information. Your write up was really informative. Excellent that Buddy is heart clear!! And such a deal to participate in the study. Here's to continued improvement for Buddy!

23rd September 2007, 07:06 PM
I'm glad to hear your experience with Dr Cole was so positive! It was refreshing how thorough she was in her explanations, and how she went over the CAT scan result with films, and graphs of the hearing tests.

Bentley had upper cervical pain, as opposed to Buddy's lower pain. Bentley also has dimished hearing predominately on his left side at about the same level that Buddy did, and he has some hydrocephaly as well, although mild as Buddy's is.

Dr Cole told me the same thing; not enough conclusive evidence of SM to say that he has it definitively. Dr Cole was very surprised that Bentley did not have PSOM because of his hearing results and other indicators that he was showing.

The cardiologist did hear a click in Bentley's heart, and suggested that I have him listened to in one year's time unless I see symptoms of heart problems.

She gave me Epi-Otic Advanced ear cleaner to use on Bentley for three weeks following the testing to see if that would help his hearing. Unfortunately, it did not help, so that is another mystery.

I could tell that Bentley was treated well there because when they released him to me he was wagging at Dr Cole; I could tell he liked her. He's a picky sort of guy in that regard, so I felt good about that.

I'm glad you were able to participate in the study. It was definitely a worthwhile experience all the way around!

23rd September 2007, 07:29 PM
Barb: I mentioned to Dr. Cole that I had communicated with you and she remembered Bentley. You can tell she really loves these dogs and in fact, has a little rescue Ruby of her own.

23rd September 2007, 08:18 PM
Thaks Phyllis for such an informative report and thanks Barb too -- it is wonderful that we have had two people involved with this programme. Both of you had very interesting results that are really helpful to hear about -- lots of food for thought.

7th October 2007, 03:46 PM
It was so great to see that some of you have already discovered the OSU study. Dr. Cole just examined a few of Lucky Star's dogs that are having issues. She did most of this while at a dog show where she was to be a keynote speaker. Not only that, but she adopted one of my foster kids at the same time. Gotta love a woman that can multi-task like that. She truly loves what she does and it shows in her treatment of her patients and their owners.

I'll second (or third) those of you who recommend that if you suspect PSOM or SM, try to get into the OSU study.

6th December 2007, 01:19 AM
Just thought I would let you know that Buddy and I were back this week at the Ohio State University Veterinary Clinics for a follow-up visit after his PSOM surgery. He had had some wax buildup and yeast infection on our first follow-up visit so Dr. Lynette Cole, who is conducting the study, had us come back a second time just to make certain everything was in good order. It was and we are now released. Since PSOM may come back we will need to be watchful but for now we have had a very good result.

I would again encourage all of you to familiarize yourself with PSOM and its symptoms and if you have any concern that your Cavalier may have it, and are in the States or Canada and not that far from Columbus, Ohio, to consider contacting Dr. Cole about participating in her study. The contact information is listed earlier in this thread.

The highlight of our visit this time was that one of Dr. Cole's three rescue Cavaliers was spending the day with her at the Clinics and we got to meet her, a tiny little Ruby girl, cute as a button.

Cathy T
6th December 2007, 03:28 AM
That's excellent news Phyllis!! Hoping everything continues well for you.

Cathy Moon
11th December 2007, 12:37 PM
Thanks for sharing this info!

I have just emailed Dr. Cole about getting 3 of my cavs, India, Geordie and Charlie into the study. :)

Cathy Moon
12th December 2007, 12:11 PM
Dr. Cole has emailed back and will call me this week about the PSOM study. She remembers Geordie from when we took him there just before the study started.

12th December 2007, 01:13 PM
Hope they get accepted, Cathy. It would be great if Dr. Cole does not find anything but if she does, they will be in good hands. It is also nice to know you are helping with a study designed to make diagnosis of PSOM easier in the future.

We were at OSU three times, because I also did our follow-up examinations there instead of with our primary Vet. On the second two visits, as we pulled up to the clinics, Bud Bud started looking around excitedly and doing his helicopter tail. Always a good sign!

Let us know how it turns out.