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Steroid shot and NSAID?

Species: Dog
Breed: mini dachshund
Age: 8-11 years
Hi Dr. Marie,

Bare with me in my lengthy explanation :) I recently found out my mini-dachshund has a calcified disc toward the end of his spine. The day I took him to the vet, he was given a steiroid injection in the office and then prescribed Previcox. He began to have bloody diarrhea and I immediately quit the Previcox after 2 full doses and 1 partial dose. The vet gave him Pro-pectalin to clear it up and his bowels have been good since then.
I have since learned from a lot of reading that giving a steiroid injection and a NSAID like Previcox at the same time is life-threatening and is the reason my dog had the bloody diarrhea. I confronted my vet and he said that it was OK to give the two medications together (though I know it was not). My dog is now on Rimadyl, Tramadol, Robaxin, Sucralfate, and Famotidine and his pain finally seems to be under control.
Here are my concerns- Should I be worried that he is still in ANY kind of danger from the combination of the steiroid injection and Previcox that he was given? As I said, his bowels have been clear since stopping the Previcox over a week ago, but I am so paranoid that something could have been damaged internally or he might have ulcers etc.- even though I am no longer seeing the bloody diarrhea. Is there anything at all I should still be concerned about in regard to this?
Also, he has 2 days of Rimadyl left (he was given a 7 day prescription). Is it likely that he needs to stay on this for a longer amount of time along with his other meds? If not, is it safe to just stop them all at once?
Let me also just say that this is a well-respected vet center where I live and I have always considered the team of vets at this office to be very good. But, needless to say, I am very concerned and disturbed by what happened in this situation. Any feedback you can give me would be very much appreciated. Thank you so much for your time.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I am always reluctant to comment on another vet's care because I don't have all of the facts.

If this was indeed a steroid injection, I do not recommend giving an NSAID such as Previcox at the same time.

The biggest concern is for a stomach ulcer. A stomach ulcer wouldn't cause diarrhea though. it would cause vomiting that looked like coffee grounds. Some stomach/intestinal upset could cause bloody diarrhea but it would not be something to be terribly concerned about. Now, if you are seeing black stool then this can be a more serious problem.

A steroid plus an NSAID does have the potential to cause kidney problems but one single dose is probably not going to cause problems. In an ideal world it may not be a bad idea to have Boner's kidney enzymes checked but really if he is feeling ok now then he is probably ok.

It is unlikely that there would be any type of lasting problems even if some type of mistake had happened.

I can't legally advise you on whether or not to continue or stop his medications.

If you feel that there has been a mistake made here then one option would be to ask for your medical records and have Boner seen at another veterinary hospital. They will give you an objective opinion.

I hope that he continues to improve.

Dr. Marie



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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Customer reply:

Hi again,

Thank you for getting back to me. Yes, Boner did have dark black diarrhea as a result of the Steiroid injection/Previcox combo. I should have mentioned that in my first message. You mentioned that this could indicate a more serious problem. He has not had this happen since quitting the Previcox. So, with this additional information, should I be concerned about any kind of problem still- even though his bowels are now fine. I am willing to get any kind of testing done to check for issues.
Thank you again.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

The black diarrhea means that there could have been bleeding in his stomach. But, if the black diarrhea has gone away and he is generally doing better then there really shouldn't be any lasting issues to worry about.



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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.