There are many diseases that you cat can fall victim to, and one of these is feline pancreatitis.
Whilst this disease strikes dogs more often than cats it is important to bear in mind that it is a disease that needs immediate attention from a vet, as it can otherwise damage your cat's liver and intestines, as well as causing a range of other serious problems.
The pancreas is located on the right side of the abdomen, and it produced enzymes that aid digestion as well as producing insulin through specialise cells located in the pancreas. Inflammation of the pancreas can result in early release of these enzymes, which can cause further damage to the pancreas and cause a range of related health problems.
There are several forms that this disease can take when it affects cats, and this includes the following:
Acute pancreatitis: This is where the condition strikes suddenly, and the pancreas becomes inflamed causing the body to retain too much fluid. With this form there is little in the way of damage.
Hemorrhagic pancreatitis: This is where the pancreas becomes inflamed but it sustains quite a lot of damage and also causes damage to the organs near to it.
Chronic pancreatitis: This is where the cat has recovered from the acute version of the disease but experiences recurring bouts of the condition.
It is important to know some of the symptoms of feline pancreatitis so that you can get medical attention for your cat if you think that it may have developed this condition.
Vomiting, abdominal pain, fever, loss of appetite, and lethargy are some of the symptoms that your cat may display, although not all cats will develop all of these symptoms, and the most common ones are the latter two. Some of these symptoms can also develop due to other health problems, so it is best to get your cat checked out if it develops any of these symptoms just in case.
There are a number of tests that can be carried out to diagnose and confirm feline pancreatitis, and the earlier the tests are carried out the better it will be for your cat.
Diagnostic procedures can include an x-ray or ultrasound examination, which can show whether the pancreas is inflamed, and a blood test to check for reduced white blood cells, as this is something that can develop in cats that have this condition.
It is not yet known what causes pancreatitis in cats, which means that there is no actual cure for the problem. However, there is treatment available, which will make it easier to manage the disease. The treatment that is prescribed by the vet will depend on a number of factors including the severity of the problem.
Anti-inflammatory drugs may be prescribed for your cat, and sometimes drugs to control any nausea or sickness stemming from the disease may be used to treat the animal. Fluid injections may be needed to treat dehydration, and in some cases the cat may have to have hospital treatment and be put on an IV drip so that the pancreas can rest.
Cats that suffer from a mild form of this condition usually make a good recovery, but for those with more severe bouts recovery levels will depend on a number of things including the amount of damage sustained by the pancreas and the surrounding organs.
Additional treatment may be needed for your cat depending on damage to surrounding organs, and the vet may need to monitor the cat to better manage the treatment.