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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19632
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My cat died suddenly yesterday at the vet due to fluid in

Customer Question

My cat died suddenly yesterday at the vet due to fluid in the chest cavity and heart failure. She had labored breathing that morning. She was diagnosed last spring with hyperthyroidism. We were giving methiazole gel since then but could't get her number below 7. She wasn't absorbing enough of it. This spring she developed a severe heart murmur. Finally a month ago we but her on the liquid and she gained 3 pounds. I wonder if she had some underlying issue or if I was not quick enough to get her thyroid under control. Her blood tests were good.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She did not seem sick until yesterday am...still eating ,drinking, jumping onto the couch.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I read that kidney disease can be masked due to hyperthyroidism and increased blood flow.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She had an ultrasound last spring also which showed scar tissue on the liver. Her liver # ***** very high but it came down some in her blood test done last month.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No 'coughing' like my other cat who is on Lasix for a valve problem.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
When we put her on the gel last year she quit vomiting and seemed to gain weight in the beginning but then started to very gradually loose. We increased her gel to two revolutions twice a day-but it wasn't until we put her on the liquid that she really started to come around. If her heart was damaged would her fluid build up like that or would it be more likely a tumor or something else?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 1 year ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today.
I am very sorry to hear about your lass's untimely passing.
In regards ***** ***** history, I would be most concerned that she had developed a type of heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). This is commonly a secondary issue in poorly control thyroid kitties.
HCM is a condition where the heart beats so fast (in these cats due to their thyroid disease) that the muscle of the heart walls become too thick. These thick walls reduce the inner space in the heart, which prevents it from filling as much as it once did. And if a heart cannot take up as much blood to push through per heartbeat, this leads to increased strain on the heart, progression of the disease and changes in the circulatory pressures. And it is the latter that causes fluid to leak from the blood vessels and cause it to pool in the chest.
Just to note, these cats do not often cough because unlike other heart diseases, the heart itself does not get bigger (since it is enlargement of the heart that pushes on the trachea to cause coughing).
Overall, based on what you have told me about Zoe, I would be most suspicious that she had developed HCM secondary to her thyroid disease. And I do have to note that cats are notorious for hiding the development of these conditions (since they modify their lives to avoid showing any respiratory elevation, exercise intolerance or fainting we might see in dogs) until they get to a sudden state of not being able to cope with the level of heart failure they have.
Please take care,
Dr. B.

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