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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 20619
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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Should a 3 year old cat with asthma be put under anesthesia

Customer Question

Should a 3 year old cat with asthma be put under anesthesia for a dental cleaning or is it life threatening.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you today. I do apologize that your question was not answered before. Different experts come online at various times; I just came online, read about your wee one’s situation, and wanted to help. In a situation of this nature, it is a case of weighing the risks and benefits of the anesthesia and dental procedure. This is because there is an elevated risk of anesthesia complications in cats with airway disease like asthma. If he just needed a routine scale and polish of his teeth; we would probably not put him under since the risk would outweigh the benefit. That said, if the dental is a must (if there is a rotten tooth that needs removing or a cat has teeth so bad that it cannot even eat) then your vet would take steps to minimize that risk as best they could. To do so, they would place a breathing tube in the airway at the start of anesthesia (to maintain an airway even if he were to have an attack with swelling of the airway) and an IV catheter (which would give us instant access if we needed to inject medication (ie bronchodilators, steroids, etc) to counteract any attacks. Furthermore, as they do with all cats, he would be under close monitoring during the whole procedure to monitor his oxygen levels and ensure there were no complications and that they can react quickly if he did show any hints of compromise. Overall, there is a higher risk of anesthesia related complications for any animal with asthma. And no matter what, any vet undertaking a procedure with an asthmatic cat will take steps like the above to limit that risk. Still in regards ***** ***** question, if your wee one's dental is a must, then it may be important for him to take that risk under careful monitoring during the procedure. But if it is just a scale/polish, then we may delay that to avoid any risk for a non-mandatory treatment. I hope this information is helpful.If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!All the best,Dr. B