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Rebecca, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14940
Experience:  More than 30 years of companion animal practice.
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My cat was recently diagnosed with FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus). We want to give

Customer Question

My cat was recently diagnosed with FIV (feline immunodeficiency virus). We want to give him the best possible treatment and care during his unpredictable lifespan. He is quite thin but continues to eat to the best of his ability. His coat has lost his shine, and we noticed that despite being neutered he was fighting other cats; this became apparent due to scartches on his body. We would like to know if a bone marrow transplant would alleviate, even the slightest bit, his ability to fight off diseases. And in the future, what can we do to prevent this from happening again? Is the FIV vaccine truly a deterrent?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Rebecca replied 2 years ago.
I am sorry to hear about Frank having FIV. I am a veterinarian, and will do my best to help.
There has been some experimentation with doing bone marrow transplantation for cats with FIV. It would be very expensive, not widely available, and you would have to travel to a specialty center that is doing it. The only place I could find when I looked was VCA specialty center in West Los Angeles.
In the future, the best way to prevent a cat getting FIV is to test the cat when you first get it and if it is negative for the virus, keep it indoors to keep it from fighting. Cat fights are the main way this virus is spread between cats. The vaccine is somewhat effective, better than nothing for cats that go outside and fight, but it is not a guarantee of protection.
Other treatments for FIV are interferon, blood transfusions, AZT, Immunoregulin, and Neogen. Not are cures, but can help with immune stimulation and quality of life.
Let me know what else I can answer or help with.