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RE: Is it this, perhaps?

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Posted by: joeysgreen at Sat Mar 5 12:24:22 2011  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by joeysgreen ]  
   

Edema usually isn't so quickly "deflatable" but I wouldn't rule out the possibility. I have not observed edema in my cornsnakes (as per link) and would venture to say it doesn't happen to all of them. It is very much a possibility that this is an anomolly associated with captive care - cramped enclosures for example.

Air is a possibility for your boa as well. Since your boa otherwise appears and behaves normally, you have two options. You can let it be until you have a reason to pursue it again (another symptom comes up, or it doesn't go away), or you can find more information about your snake to attempt to find a cause.
The diagnostics surrounding such an intermittent problem would be difficult, and largely beyond my expertise. I would file as many, good quality pictures as you can while the snake is enlarged. Try also, to get oral pic's of the same. This will help the attending vet to target specific areas.
A biopsy might be the first test, but it would also be a shot in the dark. A negative/normal finding would be good for the snake, but wouldn't get you any further in your quest for a cause. If the problem is structural as opposed to cellular, a biopsy would be of limited value.
Imagery of various types can may be able to map any annomolies in your snake. X-rays will be of limited to no value, as this appears to be a soft tissue concern. Ultrasound will be extremely helpfull if you can perform it on the snake while the condition is prevalent. CT and MRI are available in some vet clinics (either directly or by referal) and they may be the best means towards mapping a physical annomoly that explains to symptom; even when not currently present, however making it more difficult nonetheless.
Exploratory surgery is another more extreme option. At this point it would be more in the name of science as opposed to being justified from a medical perspective as there is minimal gain in quality of life to be expected.

I hope I've helped you with this information. At this point, barring an extensive oral examination (under anesthesia) by your second opinion DVM, I think to learn more about this problem you will have to commit to a lengthy road of diagnostics.

Ian


   

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