Cushing’s Syndrome in Cats – Symptoms and Treatment
Cats are animals that are generally in good health, although this does not mean that you should ignore any signs that might indicate a problem, as early diagnosis is essential for any recovery. Among these possible diseases, they are from the most common to rare ones, but that in the same way it is necessary to know in case your cat gets to suffer from them. That is why in this article of YourCatCareguide we will talk about Cushing’s syndrome in cats, their symptoms and treatments .
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What is Cushing’s syndrome?
Also called feline hyperadrenocorticism (HAF), it is a serious but rare disease in cats, caused when the hormone cortisol is accumulated in excess in the blood. This excess may have two causes: a tumor located in the adrenal glands, which is called the adrenal Cushing, or a tumor in the pituitary gland.
In cats, it usually appears more often when the animal is being treated with corticosteroids or when suffering from diabetes . However, it is still a very uncommon condition, of which there have been few cases and whose treatment is still under study. It occurs mainly in adult cats and of advanced age, being more likely mestizos of short hair, especially the females.
Symptoms of Cushing’s Syndrome in Cats
Symptoms vary from one feline to another and can be confused with other diseases, so a proper diagnosis will be necessary. However, the most common are:
- Frequent and abundant urination.
- Excessive thirst.
- Abdominal swelling.
- General weakness.
- Hair loss, especially in the body.
- Propensity for bruising.
- Skin thin and fragile, brittle.
- Breathing breath.
Diagnosis of Cushing’s syndrome
Confirming the disease is a bit complicated and requires several studies that should be done gradually:
- First, several blood and urine tests will be needed , with a few hours between one and the other. Therefore, it is possible that the cat should remain hospitalized for a few days to perform the tests.
- To know the clinical history of the feline is indispensable, to detect possible problems by medicines or tendency to certain diseases.
- Studies such as x-rays, X-rays to observe liver status, MRIs, suppression test, and ACTH stimulation tests are required to arrive at the definitive diagnosis.
Treatment of Cushing’s syndrome
First, it must be based on the elimination of the tumors that cause the syndrome. Both adrenal and pituitary tumor removal are delicate operations with a high risk rate.
To avoid surgery, it is often preferred to treat tumors with different medications, such as metyrapone . However, this rare disease still does not count on a definitive treatment, and many cats do not respond satisfactorily to the medicines or they do not survive the surgeries.
In case the cat use drugs containing corticosteroids these should be suspended, but gradually so as to be able to combat the dependence of the substance. There is also a homeopathic treatment, which consists of using a substance that is considered to cure the effects of cortisol.
Unfortunately, in none of these cases is guaranteed the guarantee of cure and often it is not possible to obtain great improvements in the health of the pet. However, we recommend that you follow the recommendations of your veterinarian .
This article is purely informative, in YourCatCareguide.com.br we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.
If you want to read more articles like Cushing’s Syndrome in cats – Symptoms and treatment , we recommend you to enter our section on Other health problems .