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Help! Liver Failure!

post #1 of 27
Thread Starter 
First off- great website you have here. Sorry if my post seems a little sterile but I want to be as descriptive as possible.

About the cat (Tiki)- it is a rescued male shorthair, age unknown, but guessed about 4-6 years old.

Problem- Over the past 2 months, the cat has lost weight. The cat had started at 10 lbs. and is now at 7 lbs. The cat occasionaly vommited, but the vommiting became more and more frequent (until it happened everday). Very recently, the cat had lost it's appetite.

We took the cat to the vet, and a blood analysis was performed. The cat was noticeably icteric. The vet thought of a foreign body the cat could have swollowed.

The blood results are as follows (ranges are parenthesized)- All values are normal, except an extremely high total bilirubin at 9.20 mg/dl (.1-.3). Alk phos is also extremely high at 243 u/l (10-72). GGT is on the high side at 9 iu/l (0-5), and ALT is extremely high, at 619 u/l (29-145).

These tests were taken at the first visit, and repeated after 3 days on fluids (Ursodiol [liver protectorant], and intravenus antibiotics [Baytril and Ampicillin].), and were repeated again on day 5 on fluids. There were no changes in any of the values.

An ultrasound showed an enlarged liver and an inflammed gallbladder wall.

Chest x-rays were performed, and showed an enlarged lymph node (which may suggest lymphoma). A fine needle aspirate showed a inflammatory disease is much more likely than lymphoma. Given the cats age, cancer is not that likely.

The cat has eaten well, went to the bathroom, and not vommited once while at the vet. Now that we have taken him home today, he does not want to eat. The antibiotics that were prescribed are impossible to give. The blood lab taken today showed no improvement. The cat is still icteric. I'm really not sure what to do at this point.

Right now, the liver failure can either be cause by a bacterial infection (unlikely because he was being treated with antibiotics all week and showed no sign of improvement per blood lab), or an inflammatory disease, which is not that well known, and would be treated with prednisone.

Has anyone ever had of a cat with this condition? Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 27
Could it be an allergy/chemical sensitivity? Something in your water, or that you clean your floors with, etc.? Sorry I don't know if that helped at all- that's all I could think of. I hope you get to the bottom of it soon.
post #3 of 27
Can you force or syringe feed this cat to jump start his eating? I really don't have much help, just my prayers.
post #4 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mcat View Post
Can you force or syringe feed this cat to jump start his eating? I really don't have much help, just my prayers.
It is very, very difficult to open his mouth to get food in. The weird thing is that he was eating well at the vet, now he is currently not eating. I will wait a day to see if he is just not hungry or whatever, because he has been home for only about 5 hours. It is unlike him not to eat his "Tempting tidbit" treats.

Thank you for your prayers.
post #5 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
It is very, very difficult to open his mouth to get food in. The weird thing is that he was eating well at the vet, now he is currently not eating. I will wait a day to see if he is just not hungry or whatever, because he has been home for only about 5 hours. It is unlike him not to eat his "Tempting tidbit" treats.

Thank you for your prayers.
Praying for your cat. It all does sound very worrying. Has the vet suggested anything that may help with the cat's eating habits? The enlarged lymph node may be because your cat's system is fighting off infection. I wish I could do something to help! I haven't had experience with a cat being this sick, although I have in human form with cancer, and different things showing up on scans can all lead to many different possibilities. Sorry
post #6 of 27
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Sooty_94 View Post
Has the vet suggested anything that may help with the cat's eating habits?
Since the cat was eating fine and pooping fine at the vet, that was not an issue, but I will look into it.


I want to sincerely thank everyone for their quick responses and prayers. This is truly an awesome site .
post #7 of 27
It sounds like you and Tiki have been through quite a bit. I don't have experience with these issues, but I'll offer positive thoughts for the 2 of you.

This site has a lot of good info on feline anorexia and assist feeding..

http://www.assistfeed.com/FelineAnorexia.htm

And here is an article on Fatty Liver Disease...

http://www.peteducation.com/article....&articleid=217
post #8 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
Since the cat was eating fine and pooping fine at the vet, that was not an issue, but I will look into it.


I want to sincerely thank everyone for their quick responses and prayers. This is truly an awesome site .
No problem. I know I appreciate the quickness in responses and how helpful the info is that I've been given. All the best!
post #9 of 27
Thread Starter 
Update- the cat has started eating this morning, but after vomitting, we have decided to take him to the vet. Overnight Tiki will be on fluids and tomorrow we will start treatment of the inflammatory condition (most likey colangiohepatitis).
post #10 of 27
Continued prayers for all of you. Poor little one.
post #11 of 27
I am praying and sending vibes your way for your Tiki. Get well, little one!

Helene
post #12 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
Update- the cat has started eating this morning, but after vomitting, we have decided to take him to the vet. Overnight Tiki will be on fluids and tomorrow we will start treatment of the inflammatory condition (most likey colangiohepatitis).

my best wishes for Tiki
post #13 of 27
I just found your thread.

Positive thoughts, good health vibes and hugs to you and Tiki. I hope the treatment for the inflammatory liver condition helps him.
post #14 of 27
I send hugs and prayers.

There is a group for assisted feeding that may help. You will find lots of people here who are so very knowledgeable.

Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
First off- great website you have here. Sorry if my post seems a little sterile but I want to be as descriptive as possible.

About the cat (Tiki)- it is a rescued male shorthair, age unknown, but guessed about 4-6 years old.

Problem- Over the past 2 months, the cat has lost weight. The cat had started at 10 lbs. and is now at 7 lbs. The cat occasionaly vommited, but the vommiting became more and more frequent (until it happened everday). Very recently, the cat had lost it's appetite.

We took the cat to the vet, and a blood analysis was performed. The cat was noticeably icteric. The vet thought of a foreign body the cat could have swollowed.

The blood results are as follows (ranges are parenthesized)- All values are normal, except an extremely high total bilirubin at 9.20 mg/dl (.1-.3). Alk phos is also extremely high at 243 u/l (10-72). GGT is on the high side at 9 iu/l (0-5), and ALT is extremely high, at 619 u/l (29-145).

These tests were taken at the first visit, and repeated after 3 days on fluids (Ursodiol [liver protectorant], and intravenus antibiotics [Baytril and Ampicillin].), and were repeated again on day 5 on fluids. There were no changes in any of the values.

An ultrasound showed an enlarged liver and an inflammed gallbladder wall.

Chest x-rays were performed, and showed an enlarged lymph node (which may suggest lymphoma). A fine needle aspirate showed a inflammatory disease is much more likely than lymphoma. Given the cats age, cancer is not that likely.

The cat has eaten well, went to the bathroom, and not vommited once while at the vet. Now that we have taken him home today, he does not want to eat. The antibiotics that were prescribed are impossible to give. The blood lab taken today showed no improvement. The cat is still icteric. I'm really not sure what to do at this point.

Right now, the liver failure can either be cause by a bacterial infection (unlikely because he was being treated with antibiotics all week and showed no sign of improvement per blood lab), or an inflammatory disease, which is not that well known, and would be treated with prednisone.

Has anyone ever had of a cat with this condition? Thanks in advance.
post #15 of 27
I can truly sympathize with what Tiki is going thru; my 7 y/o Bob began losing weight and finally stopped eating. A trip to the vet, complete with loads of blood work, showed liver disease. He was totally jaundiced, but the tests ruled out fatty-liver disease. After a liver biopsy, barium x-rays, more meds than I could count (including course after course of anti-biotics) the vet still couldn't pinpoint the cause of his illness. The best they (2 vets) could come up with was an inflammation of the biliary, basically meaning the ducts from his liver were 'clogged'. The biopsy showed new liver cells, as the liver is one organ that can regenerate. Unfortunately, the new growth couldn't keep up with the degeneration. We (meaning I) nursed Bob for 7 weeks--IV fluids, forced-feeding 4x a day, half a dozen different meds; in the end we lost him. According to the vets, sometimes you just don't know what causes something like this and the best you can do is try everything and hope something works. I sincerely hope your vet can find the cause of Tiki's illness; depending on what they find, you could be in for quite an ordeal trying to get Tiki thru this. Sending loads of (((healing vibes))) to your sweet boy.
post #16 of 27
Thread Starter 
Update- We have taken Tiki home and he looks fairly good. When we took him home he showed interest in food (hopefully he can keep it down). He was started on prednisone today to treat an inflammatory condition (which is hopefully the culprit of his liver failure). Since we cannot administer the pills (he goes nuts), we will take him to the local vet everyday.
post #17 of 27
I'm glad to hear Tiki is home and doing a little better. I hope he continues to be interested in his food.

This may not work due to Tiki's lack of appetite, but have you tried Pill Pockets to medicate him? They are soft cat treats with hole for inserting a pill. Ideally, the cat will accept it as a treat and eat the pill. They are available at most pet stores. if it doesn't work for him now it's a thought for later as his appetite improves.
post #18 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
Update- We have taken Tiki home and he looks fairly good. When we took him home he showed interest in food (hopefully he can keep it down). He was started on prednisone today to treat an inflammatory condition (which is hopefully the culprit of his liver failure). Since we cannot administer the pills (he goes nuts), we will take him to the local vet everyday.
My cat Whiskers was also very hard to pill. The Pill Pockets worked for like 5 days but then she caught on and refused to eat them.

What ended up working for me is having the prednisone made into a liquid suspension. Ask your vet to write a prescription for you to take to a compounding pharmacy. It takes about a day to get the medication made but I found it was a lot easier to administer the liquid with a syringe than trying to pry her mouth open to pop a pill. The pharmacy even asked me what Whiskers favorite flavor was so that they could add it to the medicine...I chose chicken.
post #19 of 27
Thread Starter 
Update- Tiki has been taken to the vet everyday to get his pills and today he recieved fluids. I think for $5, it is a lot easier to bring him to the vet than to struggle with him. He looks fairly good and is in good spirits. He continues to show interest in food, although he does not want to drink (part of the reason for getting fluids w/ the heat). He was not vommited yet (which hopefully is a very good sign).

I will keep you guys updated.
post #20 of 27
Sending loads of (((healing vibe))) to sweet Tiki.
post #21 of 27
Thread Starter 
Update- Tiki seems to be doing very well. He is eating very well and drinking a good amount too. His stools are of a very normal size. Clinically, he looks very good. He seems to be back to himself. He has been on prednisone for the past two weeks and he is still getting it. We are having blood drawn today. When I get the results I will post them up.

Thank you for the continued support.
post #22 of 27
We're all still rooting for Tiki and you. Glad to hear he's better. Please do keep us posted.
post #23 of 27
Thread Starter 
Sorry for the late update. The blood results are back. His liver enzymes have gone down (alkp down to 500). Although the numbers are far from normal, he is on the right road. Tiki looks excellent and attitude-wise is back to himself. We have been taking him to the vet every day for prednisone and Pepcid. We just added Ursodiol. This news is very encouraging to us. Thank you all for the continued support.
post #24 of 27
That is very good news. You and the vet are to be congratulated - it is difficult to pull a cat back from liver failure.
post #25 of 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by teek21 View Post
Sorry for the late update. The blood results are back. His liver enzymes have gone down (alkp down to 500). Although the numbers are far from normal, he is on the right road. Tiki looks excellent and attitude-wise is back to himself. We have been taking him to the vet every day for prednisone and Pepcid. We just added Ursodiol. This news is very encouraging to us. Thank you all for the continued support.

Continued prayers are being offered!
post #26 of 27
It's good to hear that Tiki is doing so much better. You've done a great job with him. Positive thoughts and healthy vibes to Tiki.
post #27 of 27
That's great! Hope sweet Tiki continues to improve!
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