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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 28517
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience.
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My female cat is 12. Regularly sees a vet due to thyroid issue

Customer Question

My female cat is 12. Regularly sees a vet due to thyroid issue for which cat has taken felimazole daily for years and which T4 tests show is effective. Saw vet last week and cats's blood work & other usual tests are great. She is eating & drinking & using her litter box as usual though her stools are very small & hard. Had an X-ray done to see if anything could be detected but nothing showed. But, she is wasting away. Was about 7 lbs a couple years ago but has gradually lost weight. Now, within a month has gone from 5.5 to 4.5. My vet says most likely some sort of cancer. There have been a few occasions when her vomit has been pink but that's not the usual case. Is there any further course of action I can take? I'm at a loss for what to do next.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 2 years ago.
I agree that a cancer is most likely when progressive cachexia (wasting) occurs. When basic blood tests are normal, we look to the gastrointestinal tract - an area poorly represented by blood tests - for the cancer. I can't overlook that you've seen hematemesis - blood in her vomitus (the "pink") - which suggests a cancer in the GI tract such as small cell lymphoma or a solidtumor such as gastrointestinal adenocarcinoma. To answer you directly, an abdominal ultrasound would be the diagnostic of choice at this time. Ultrasound is particularly sensitive for detecting the inflammation caused by GI cancers. Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.