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Thickened intestines; high calcium - early cancer signs?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have a 15 yr old male that has been otherwise healthy until I started to switch foods about 4 months ago. Almost 2 mos ago, he started to become lethargic, I had to bring food to him to eat and he had constipation issues. The vet put him on antibiotics and he perked up. He has had constipation in the past, he has become more regular over the past year or so.

This past saturday morning he came to me meowing loudly and he began vomiting and straining - I thought he was constipated, but he had diarrhea, so bad - I rushed him to the ER Vet. He has not had a bout of diahrrea ever. He has vomitted with constipation and hairballs. I have 2 cats, and have noticed stinky, soft stools upon food change.

They said his calcium levels were high. Xray showed thick intestines so they admitted him and put him on an IV to flush out the calcium, and did an ultrasound.
They did not find a mass anywhere. His kidney is mineralized, but she said not to worry about it. (Reg vet said high calcium could be because of this)
His calcium did not drop, they wanted to add lasix to his IV, but I chose to bring him home and follow up with his regular vet.

He is on prednisone and flagyl. He is tired, but is eating, drinking, using the litter and moving about.

He had a physical today and it went well. They are still waiting on PTH test and a malignancy profile.

Now, I am worried about every little thing he does, he seemed very stressed from his hospital stay. (3 days - and he was not happy there).
I am keeping a close on him, but I am wondering if I am worried too much right now.
He is meowing at night, still checking the apartment out at times, but otherwise seems to be resting okay.

Thank you .
post #2 of 10


You should follow up with your vet asap ....
post #3 of 10
As I learned a little over a year ago, high blood calcium, loose stool & thickened intestine can be signs of intestinal lymphoma. I know this because my Jordan had constipation & then his blood calcium spiked the vet was sure it was lymphoma. I can't tell you for sure what to do because I got lucky. Over a year later later and he is doing better (at one point the vet thought he only had a month left).

If his blood calcium is raised that will make him lethargic & make him not eat. Do you know what his calcium level was? The pred along with flushing his system will help bring the calcium down, but pred is not good for them long term. Jordan is young (5 now) so it was not the same as your case. Being 15 & having kidney problems complicates the situation. Bad kidneys can complicate the situation and it is not uncommon for a sudden food switch to cause loose stool. I did not know that thickened intestine could be diagnosed from an x-ray. Jordan had 2 differnt ultrasounds to confirm that there was nothing wrong with his intestines. The first was done by a specialist but I'll warn you it was expensive. Either way you need to follow up with his vet. I know it's hard, but do your best not to get too stressed (says the girl that cried every night for a month) I truly believe that they can feel when we are stressed and that scares them more.

Sending lots of healthy vibes for your cat.
post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hi. Glad your kitty is doing better. It is scary.
Clive saw his vet yesterday and his physical went well.

The ER vest did do an ultrasound. His calcium was 1.44 which confused me because his reg vet said that would be low? 1 1/2 mos ago it was in the higher norm range, but not enough for his vet to be concerned)
The ER did offer to do a biopsy, but I chose to follow up with his vet through more bloodwork; they seemed very aggressive there (not all of the results are back from his first day there.) I did not like that he still had feces on his bottom and tail when I went back the next day to visit and an eye infection that was not there when he was admitted.)
They said he has a good quality of life still, but I know it may be the beginning of something bad.

He goes back to his vet monday for recheck of all bloodwork.

He does feel that I am stressed that's for sure.. so does my other kitty, Duke.
I just don't want him to suffer, he is a special boy. Aren't they all?
Thank you for the good vibes and advice.
post #5 of 10
Unless your vet is using a differnt scale than my vet 1.44 would be very low. Somewhere around 11 is the top end of normal according to my vets test. Jordan spiked at 15 at his highest and is now back down to 9.9. I do know that every lab is differnt and their tests are different.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Well, we saw Clive's vet again today. There seems to be the start of a small mass in his intestines and a mass in his kidney ( he said that could be just that it is old ) that along with calcium levels on the rise, the doctor suspects lymphoma.

He said that at his age doing a biopsy could threaten his life while under anethesia. He will continue on the prednisolone, pepcid ac, and recheck blood and watch if symptoms worsens.
If it is - he gives him 6 - 12 months.
I just don't want him to be in pain. Poor little guy, he's been my angel..
post #7 of 10
I sure hope it isnt cancer.
Prayers for him.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
thank you .. me too...
post #9 of 10
I'm sorry to hear it could be cancer. I think that word is the hardest to hear because it's such a difficult disease. I hope you kitty feels as good as possible for as long as possible.
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
thank you so much... me too -
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