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Our 15 year old cat has refused food and water four days. We…

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Our 15 year old...

Our 15 year old cat has refused food and water four days. We have been giving him water with a syringe. Tests show everything in the normal range (three days ago). Since Sunday he has deteriorated rapidly becoming weaker and now can’t stand. No vomiting or diahorrea. His back legs have ‘gone’. He hisses if I try to make him comfortable. Hope you can help. Marilyn

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. Hopefully it didn't make a mess. Did the cat eat anything unusual?

No. Now his front legs have gone and he is in a panic

Veterinarian's Assistant: OK. The Expert will know what to do. What is the cat's name?

Alfie

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else important you think the Veterinarian should know about Alfie?

He is taking Vidalta and amodip

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Answered in 9 minutes by:
12/5/2017
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,152
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

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Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago

I am so sorry to hear about Alfie's inability to stand, having lost strength in both his back and front legs, hissing when you try to move him and get him comfortable, and complete refusal to eat or drink, despite normal blood test results.

He sounds very painful.

I assume that you mean he is taking vidalta (carbimazole), which is used to control hyperthyroidism symptoms by blocking thyroid hormone production, and amlodipine which is used to control high blood pressure in cats.

Hyperthyroid cats can develop secondary heart disease and that can predispose to abnormal blood flow and clots forming in the heart. Or perhaps he has primary heart disease which has allowed the same sequence of events to occur. If those blood clots are released into circulation then can lodge in the aorta or other blood vessels, often to the limbs, blocking blood flow which can lead to inability to use their limbs and severe pain due to tissue death/anoxia. These cats will have difficulty walking and extreme pain. Their affected leg paw(s) will initially feel cool to the touch because they have poor blood supply.

These cats may initially have normal blood results, because organ function is fine. But in time I would expect high levels of myoglobin (muscle tissue breakdown product), and an enzyme called CPK (creatinine phospholkinase), another enzyme increased by tissue death.

I highly recommend that your fellow be seen on an emergency basis tonight.

Treatment is anti-clotting medication like heparin or low dose aspirin as well as pain medication such as Buprenorphine and treatment of the primary heart disease that predisposed him to developing clots. Prognosis is very poor because of the damage done by the clot as well as the underlying heart disease. Recovery may take weeks. And we must address the primary serious heart disease as well.

Your fellow needs hands on veterinary care as soon as possible. Please let me know if you have any further questions.

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