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Pancreatitis in Cats
Pancreatitis is a serious illness and without proper treatment it can be fatal for felines. However, with immediate care by a veterinarian and a treatment plan implemented consistently, the disease can be effectively treated. Here in Austin, the vet at the Emergency Animal Hospital is available 24/7 to treat your cat’s’ acute pancreatitis as well as many other pet emergencies.
Before understanding pancreatitis it is important to understand the function of the pancreas. Located between your cat’s stomach and duodenum, the pancreas produces digestive enzymes and insulin. The word “pancreatitis” actually means inflammation of the pancreas caused when the digestive enzymes begin attacking the pancreas itself instead of traveling to the small intestines to aid in digestion. When this happens, the cat can experience intense pain and swelling in the area possibly causing lethargy anorexia and vomiting.
Veterinarians have found that pancreatitis is more common that once thought and is associated with a number of possible causes including:
Cats are notorious for concealing their pain and sickness and will often find a quiet place to hide in. The same is true with an attack of pancreatitis and that’s why if you notice any of the following it’s important to bring him or her to our veterinarian in Austin.
The first step is for our vet to obtain an overall picture of your cat’s health followed by a thorough physical examination. The vet will probably want to draw blood from your cat to run a series of tests. In the blood work we look for kidney, liver, pancreas function, and blood sugar levels. A complete blood count (CBC) checks for infection, inflammation, and anemia among other issues. We also test the cat’s electrolyte levels for dehydration. X-rays help us see the pancreas, its size, shape and location and an ultrasound gives additional imaging of the pancreas and other abdominal organs. An endoscopy may also be ordered to examine the stomach lining and intestines.
Depending on the severity of the case, the cat may require hospitalization at one of our facilities here in Austin. In addition, any of the following therapies may be necessary:
Pancreatitis cannot be prevented but our veterinarian does advise that you keep medications away from your cat and be careful when applying pesticides. We would be happy to provide more information about this disease. Call us anytime.