12 January

Gus’s ME Journal, 1/12/18 More Good News For Gus

by Jon Katz
More Good News For Gus

The most disturbing thing we heard all week about Gus and his megeasophagus was that he had lost nearly three pounds in the last two weeks. The implications of that were severe, it could mean he was no longer able to process nutrition, or it could be something else entirely.

We began a new nutrition program yesterday, and today, we found that Gus had gained nearly three pounds. That is very good news, it means that food is getting through the esophagus and into the digestive system. We took him to the vet to weigh him today, and were happy to discover that he had gained two pounds over night, up from 12.5 to 14.5 lbs.

Dr. Fariello and i agreed on a pro-active approach. There are about 500 distinctly different approaches to treating megaesophagus, about 30 of them are considered to be the best treatments with the best results.

The Bailey Chair movement has an enormous and well-organized constituency but we have- following the advice of people who know and treat the disease – believe that is not the right treatment for Gus now. For some reason, this has upset some people, who believe I am just being stubborn and myopic.

Welcome to the animal world, and it’s superhighway to confrontation and judgement, the Internet.

We are feeding Gus four times a day now, and mixing up his gastroentric food with softer high protein food used by vets in recovery. All treats of any kind have been eliminated. He takes pro-motility drug, Metoclopramide, which is given to help with the quick passage of food through the upper digestive tract. It is also used to treat disorders of the upper gasto-intestinal tract,  like as acid reflux disease or megaesophagus.  Metoclopramide is believed to  reduce delays in the digestive tract by speeding up the passage of food.

Chronic vomiting or regurgitation of this type is typically characterized by a small amount yellowish bile vomit, usually in the mornings. Those were Gus’s precise symptoms. Before meals, we administered by syringe some anti-acid.

We also believe the acupuncture had a significant impact on Gus’s illness, afterwards he changed. Dr. Fariello is a passionate believer in acupuncture, which she has studied intensely. Gus came home and seemed somewhat transformed, he needed the new food, ate heartily and had no trouble keeping the food down or moving it through his digestive tract.

We also, of course, stand him up and hold him after each meal.

The significant thing about the weight gain is that it means Gus’s body is processing nutrition. That is essentil in tica,

So aside from the weight gain, he had a strong day all day. Not a single regurgitation or other digestive incident. Gus is looking good today and will see tomorrow what it is that tomorrow bring. Like us, Dr. Fariello iss pleased but happy ,,,,,,

She explained to me why she thought it was helpful, but I couldn’t follow it all. Doesn’t matter though, it seemed to work. We don’t, of course, know precisely what did work and what didn’t. And we already know it is an up an down, megeasophagus rarely just goes away.

So we are prepared for anything, including good news, and this is good news. This will be the regiment for a week, we’ll all meet again and take it from there.


  1. in any endeavor, keep trying until you find what “sticks” — just like how Italian grandmas supposedly know when the spaghetti is done.

    1. or as Edison pointed out — keep trying to find out what doesn’t work as the last thing is always what does.

      “I have not failed. I’ve just found 10,000 ways that won’t work.”

      “Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up.”

  2. I am very glad to hear this good news and happy for Gus, you and Maria. I hope things continue to go well and Gus continues to improve.

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