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Rebecca
Rebecca, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 13295
Experience:  More than 30 years of companion animal practice.
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Dr. Scott! We are worried about our Simba!!! He was just

Customer Question

Hi Dr. Scott! We are worried about our Simba!!! He was just diagnosed with diabetes (blood sugar only in 300 so control with diet vs Insulin). He's only 8 yo, a Main Coon mix. However his blood Ca was 11.2. No X-rays were taken as we just spent $500 on an ER visit because he also had sudden onset of hind leg neuropathy that progressed quickly from can't jump up into bed to legs dragging within 2 weeks! His leg temp & pulses were normal they say. He did have a UTI that was treated via IM antibiotics.
It's been 8 weeks & I've noted a drastic decrease in the hind leg strength as well as some progression now of decreased strength as well in the forelimbs. I was told his limb issue was diabetic neuropathy but could we be dealing with another issue here like spinal or CNS cancer? His limb neuropathy progress is so rapid & concerns me. If spinal or CNS cancer what other issues should I be on the lookout for? I'm lucky, he uses the Breeze litter system ONLY so we don't have to deal with cat litter tracking issues, and it is still easy for him to maneuver in and out of the box. We keep fresh water bowls around the house for him to stay well hydrated. Any suggestions, hints, advice is appreciated. He's seen me through 2 strokes.
Sophia Herrick
Submitted: 7 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
No heart murmur was noted. No history of parasites. BUN & Creat both WNL. Phos WNL. Sorry, Ca was 11.8. No other abn labs. No Hx of Feline Leukemia but was a rescue and had some indoor/outdoor exposure.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 7 months ago.
Hello, I am sorry to hear you are worried about Simba. I see you requested Dr. Scott, but I am sorry you have not gotten help before now. Can I be of help, or would you prefer to wait for Dr. Scott? My name is Rebecca. I am a veterinarian. Is Simba on insulin? How much is he getting? Or are you just using the diabetic diet for now?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
Just Diabetic Diet, his blood sugar isn't an issue, it's well-controlled with the food.What concerns us is the rapid neuropathy, the elevated Ca, and are we looking at CA? If so where? ( I'm assuming CNS/spinal) If so, what is prognosis? progression of disease? Lifespan? Sign/symptoms? Basically what can we expect? Is he in pain? The only thing negative I see right now is occasional painful urination (I'm assuming due to vocalization during the act). Otherwise he is a MAJOR purr monster, still my Velcro kitty, still climbing stairs to bedroom floor, still playful with toys & addicted to his Catnip, still eating & drinking well, still urinating & defacating normally, still using his Breeze litter system ONLY, etc. I'm sure that I'm not the only one to have suffered through this but I can't seem to find these answers. I will appreciate any trained LVM in this area. Mine is not (a young doc in the box), ER hospital didn't even discuss elevated Ca. His extreme & rapid acceleration of limb neuropathy just does not sound like diabetic neuropathy to me coming from a human medical background. I love my pet very much but will not watch him suffer unnecessarily. If I can rest assured that while we progress through the next phases you describe to me that he's not in too much distress and he is still my Purr Monster I can live with that. I just need these answers.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 7 months ago.
What is his blood sugar level? Diabetic neuropathy happens because the blood sugar is too high. The best way to prevent/control diabetic neuropathy is to get the blood sugar under 200. He is probably weak and unable to walk normally, but the nerve pain can be painful. I am not sure what an LVM is; sorry! It is possible that this is not diabetic neuropathy, but something else (high blood pressure, stroke, cancer but he seems young to have a tumor in his spinal cord). The elevated blood calcium could indicate pancreatitis, and we often see pancreatitis with diabetes. If he were mine and his blood sugar is 300 I would start a low dose of insulin. I might check a PSL level to see if he has pancreatitis. I might measure his blood pressure. Let me know what other questions you have.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 7 months ago.
How is Simba doing? Can I help with anything else?
Customer: replied 7 months ago.
His blood sugar was 180 on last check. BP was fine. Prognosis with pancreatitis doesn't seem good. We all agreed he was young for CA. However his symptomatic presentation of severe & sudden onset of neuropathy with rapid progression just seems out of the norm for DM. He is still my purr monster butt limbs ARE weak. I don't want to go through Insulin therapy with him. First of all, I really can't afford it. Second, it's cruel to watch him suffer if he doesn't have to do so. He hates needles of any size. I cant put either of us through that. I'm coming to accept he won't be with me come June.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 7 months ago.
180, that is pretty good; almost normal. It does seem out of the norm for DM if his blood sugar is nearly normal. Do you know his potassium level? Low potassium can make a cat weak like you describe, and may improve with potassium supplements.
Expert:  Rebecca replied 7 months ago.
How is Simba? Can I help with or answer anything else?

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