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My 18 month old cat is being treated for pancreatitis. He…

Customer Question
My 18 month old...

My 18 month old cat is being treated for pancreatitis. He started vomiting on Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day was not himself. Looked in pain, wouldn't eat or drink. We took him the emergency clinic on Christmas Day and they hydrated him and took x-rays. His Vitals were normal. He went home medicated with an anti nausea med. He drank a tiny sip of water at home but didn't eat. The next day took him to our Vet. Blood work was done, and pancreatitis was suspected due to pain in the abdomen and he vomited when examined. He was given, antibiotic, pain med, hydration. The next day was much improved. Drank a little water but did not eat. Took him back to the vet 3rd day in a row and he was IV'd with electrolytes, anti-biotics, pain meds for 9 hours at the hospital. Took him home and he was 100 % improved. He drank a little and ate 2 little bites. He is back again today for the same treatment. He improves each time a little more but still won't eat or drink much. How long should we do this?

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. The Expert will know if the cat will be able to digest that. What is the cat's name?

Ollie

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

The vet did suggest an ultrasound. But not sure how that is going to help. We are financially prepared for that kind of expense if surgery is necessary.

Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I meant to say, sadly,
we are not financially prepared to do a big surgery.
Answered in 1 hour by:
12/28/2017
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Dr. Drew
Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16,910
Experience: Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
Verified

Hi, I'm a licensed veterinarian and I'll be happy to help.

Pancreatitis can be a frustrating illness in cats, as it's often unclear what causes it, so the treatment is mainly supportive - meaning, treating the symptoms (dehydration, poor appetite). In some cases, full resolution of pancreatitis can take weeks or months. Typically, these long-term cases are best managed with the placement of a feeding tube into the esophagus, which allows for feeding at home with a syringe into the tube, providing nutrition even if the cat doesn't want to eat. This also allows for administering medicines to reduce inflammation in the pancreas and other digestive organs, plus appetite stimulant medicines.

I think with financial limitations, the feeding tube is still a reasonable option, assuming no further vomiting is happening. Placement of the feeding tube is likely to cost a few hundred dollars, but is cheaper than surgery.

If there's still vomiting going on, then I am worried about a possible obstruction in the digestive tract -- and a feeding tube won't treat that. Surgery would be needed in that situation.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
He isn't vomiting anymore. I think I will have them do the ultrasound to rule out an obstruction and ask about the feeding tube option. Thank you.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian replied 4 months ago

You're very welcome - please let me know if you need anything else.

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Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. Drew
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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
He had an obstruction which was found in the ultrasound. He swallowed a hair tie. He had surgery to remove it 6 days ago. So far he is doing okay. He is eating a drinking small amounts every few hours and is using the litter box. He is still on pain meds and antibiotics. Hopefully, the healing will continue without complications. We are still hopeful.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian replied 4 months ago

Thanks for the update - certainly that was something I was suspicious of and I'm glad you took the extra steps to have that identified and treated!

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