Articles

Cats + Medical Conditions

  • Hypocalcemia means that the level of calcium in the bloodstream is low. Calcium is an important electrolyte within the body, and is needed for normal function of muscles and nerves. Calcium concentrations in the blood are usually regulated very closely but occasionally the control mechanism is impaired and may result in low blood calcium concentrations.

  • Hypokalemia is a term that refers to a low blood concentration of potassium. Potassium is an important electrolyte within the body and is vital for the normal function of muscles and nerves. In some situations, the normal control of body potassium concentration is lost, resulting in depletion of potassium and low blood potassium concentrations.

  • Ibuprofen is a commonly used NSAID and is used to treat fever, pain, and inflammation in humans. Ibuprofen poisoning occurs when a cat ingests a toxic dose of ibuprofen, either through misuse or by accident. Ibuprofen poisoning causes many different clinical signs because many different organ systems can be affected. Most commonly, cats show signs related to kidney problems.

  • Icterus is also known as jaundice or yellow jaundice. It refers to an excessive accumulation of a yellow pigment in the blood and tissues. When icterus has been present for any length of time, it will discolor many tissues and will become visible as jaundice on most body surfaces, including the skin.

  • There are many possible causes of infertility in female cats, including behavioral, physical, and medical factors. Your veterinarian will perform a thorough examination and testing to diagnose the reason for your female cat's infertility, and treatment will depend on the underlying cause.

  • There are many possible causes of infertility in male cats, including behavioral, genetic, physical, and medical factors. Your veterinarian will perform a thorough examination and testing to diagnose the reason for your male cat's infertility, and treatment will depend on the underlying cause.

  • Inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) is a syndrome caused by a specific reaction to chronic irritation of the stomach or intestines as a response to an insult, injury or foreign substance. IBD is most commonly diagnosed in middle-aged to older cats. It most commonly causes vomiting; however, if the intestine or colon is involved, chronic diarrhea can be seen. IBD is definitively diagnosed by biopsy of affected tissue. Treatments include a hypoallergenic or easily digested diet, metronidazole, chloramphenicol, and corticosteroids. Helicobacter pylori, a bacteria that invades the stomach lining may be treated with antibiotics if this is a suspected cause of IBD. Long-term prognosis is good if the cat responds to treatment.

  • Atopy, also known as inhalant allergy, is a common cause of skin problems in cats. Cats with atopy are often allergic to the same allergens that affect humans: tree pollens, grass pollens, weeds, molds, and dust mites. Cats develop skin inflammation in response to these allergens. Atopy is a diagnosis of exclusion, meaning that your veterinarian will rule out other, similar skin conditions in order to arrive at a diagnosis. If your cat is diagnosed with atopy, lifelong management will be required in order to manage your cat's clinical signs.

  • Otitis interna can cause some significant signs in your cat, including drooling from the side of the mouth, difficulty eating, inability to blink, and drooping eyelids, lips, and nostril on the affected side. If the specific cause can be identified, such as bacterial or fungal infection, treatment could involve long-term medications. Less commonly, surgery may be needed. Many cats will respond to treatment and recover well.

  • Ear cleaning is not usually necessary in cats. Most cats are fine without it, but for those who are prone to wax build-up and/or ear infections, ear cleaning is a very important part of your cat's hygiene needs. Cleaning your dog's ears does not require any special equipment. Your veterinarian can help you decide how often your dog's ears should be cleaned.