4 years ago today Murphy had his first x-rays. He had already been limping for a couple of weeks and our vet had started him on pain medication and an anti-inflammatory. With the medications he could walk with just barely a limp. My husband had had an accident at work the day before, so we spent the night in the hospital, but I made it home in time to get Murphy out to his appointment at the radiology center. I walked in, met the doctor and explained what had been going on. He took Murphy to the back and returned with him just a few minutes later, telling me that everything looked great. I was so relieved – he must have just strained something running out in the yard with the other dogs. Famous last words, right? He gave me a copy of the x-rays on CD and sent us on our way.
A couple of weeks later, Murphy finished his medications and immediately started limping and yelping in pain again. I took him back to our vet along with the CD of the x-rays. When our vet reviewed the x-rays, however, he thought he ‘might’ see something near Murphy’s elbow, but the picture was a little bit blurry. He gave us a refill on the medications and told me that if that didn’t do it, he would give us a referral to an orthopedic specialist. The medications helped again until January, which is when we got the referral to go out to Michigan State University. However, it took a few weeks to get an appointment.
Why didn’t they get a better picture??? Why? It wasn’t until February that we got repeat x-rays. Murphy went misdiagnosed for 4 months! And it was over 5 months by the time he had his biopsy, even more x-rays, then finally surgery.
I do realize how very lucky we’ve been – we’ve gotten 3 1/2 years so far, and that’s just incredible. But I still get angry that Murphy was in pain and that time could have been made better for him. He could have had surgery sooner. I knew something was wrong, but I never thought it was cancer.