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Help with liver problems please

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
As some of you may be aware, I took in a partially blind and deaf foster cat on Sat, he had had some bloods done while at the vets last week (not my vet), and they handed him over with a copy of the results but no explanation, so I popped into my vet today with them. His ALT is at 271, and the range goes from 0-60, so he is over 200 higher than he should be, which is a concern, and his albumin, globulin and protein are out, so there is definitely some liver issues going on, but there was a couple of things not tested for, so she can't say much more than that. His urine gravity and pH weren't good either, so very dilute urine. She was also concerned about his white blood cell count, quite a lot of that was high.

My vet isn't a big fan of prescription foods, she rarely finds cats that will eat the 'liver diet', so isn't suggesting that. He is like a walking skeleton (found as a stray), and needs to put weight on, but I have had two cats with liver problems, so I know it is hard for htem to put weight on - if anyone has any suggestions for UK based foods, I would appreciate them - he doesnt like dry food.

At the moment, his only clinical signs are very thin, excessive drinking and urination and at the moment diarrhea, but he is on antibiotics after a dental, so not sure if that is just the meds. I am feeding him a mix of senior food (as the kind people who found him are the kind of people who think any cat over a certain age should have senior food, and he came with 4 boxes!!) and supermeat, as it is mushier for him. Vet thinks he is around 12 - there is some more history on him on here, I shall find the thread.
post #2 of 7
Please read this site and take to your vet

post #3 of 7
Poor little guy. It sounds like he's got multiple health issues going on.

The ALT is high, but I'm wondering if it doesn't have something to do with the high white cell count. He could be fighting off infection in the liver itself. Liver enzymes can fluctuate for a variety of reasons.

I'm surprised they did an dental since he's a "walking skeleton". Was his bloodwork so much better at the time of the dental than it is now? If not, seems they took a big chance putting him under anesthesia, especially with a compromised liver. Thank goodness he got through it alright.

Excessive drinking and dilute urine are classic signs of kidney problems. Getting the kidney values from the bloodwork would be very helpful in determining what's going on - a physical exam can help too. Diseased kidneys are usually small - the vet should be able to feel them during the exam.

Sub-q fluids would be so beneficial to this boy if, in fact, he does have kidney disease. It would be helpful to the liver as well.

Did you ever use milk thistle (a natural herb) for your kitties who had liver problems in the past? It's a nice, natural , no side-effects remedy that human liver patients use as well with proven clinical results. The best kind to get is combined with phosphatidylcholine since it is the type most easily and effectively used by the body.

I'm sorry I'm unfamiliar with UK foods, so I can only recommend you buy the highest quality canned food you can afford. As you know, the liver processes everything taken into the body, so foods without colors, or artificial ingredients are important. Dry food is tougher for the body to process, it uses up lots of moisture. If you do find a high quality dry food that this kitty likes, give it to him as a treat only. The benefit of dry food is that it may help him put on weight.

If he isn't eating enough on his own, please assist feed him. A very helpful site is www.assistfeed.com Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on "subscribe to Yahoo Feline Assist-feeding list group".

You are an angel to take this little boy in - please keep us updated!
post #4 of 7
Thread Starter 
HEre is the previous thread, which has pics


Will read that article thanks Sharky

KTLynn - i hope that is all it is, but his albumin and globulin are out, so there is something going on in his liver, whether it is infection or disease we dont know.

The bloods were done before his dental, here are the results - nothing obviously wrong with his kidneys, so the drinking and weeing is due to his liver. My vet was surprised that a dental was done after looking at these results, and thought the globulin was higher than you would expect if it was just dental related.

Red Cells\t7.64\t10^12/l\t5.0-10.0
White Cells\t*30.3\t10^9/l\t6.0-15.0
Neutrophils\t*85% 25.76\t10^9/l\t2.5-12.5
Lymphocytes\t*6% 1.82\t10^9/l\t2.0-7.0
Monocytes\t*3% 0.91\t10^9/l\t<0.6
Eosinophils\t*6% 1.82\t10^9/l\t0.05-0.7
Basophils\t0% 0.00\t10^9/l\t0.0-0.15
Platelet Count\t*766\t10^9/l\t150-550
Total Protein\t*90.1\tg/l\t60.0-80.0
AG Ratio\t*0.33\t\t0.60-1.50
Urea \t*12.0\tMmol/l\t2.5-9.9
ALT (SGPT) 37 c\t*271.3\tIU/L\t5.0-60.0
Alk Phosphatase 37c\t*100.0\tIU/L\t<60.0
Gamma GT 37 C\t9.0\tIU/L\t0.1-9.0
Urine Specific Gravity\t1.018\t\t

Never used Milk Thistle, I will look into it though. Sub-q's aren't as routine in the UK as in the US, and to be honest, I wouldnt do them myself on him, I can't even brush him at the moment as he is so thin.

Will certainly look into different wet foods for him, the rescue tends to just buy whatever is on offer, so I think I will supplement him (my last cat with liver issues got chicken once a week, as she went off chicken daily) - things like that are just a bit harder at the moment due to the amount of cats in the house and the fact he shares a room with another blind and deaf cat, so I can't give it to one and not the other, but there sadly is a cost element to consider.
post #5 of 7
I'm sorry to hear such sad news. I found out today that my Maverick has something wrong with his liver too - but the vet won't know for sure exactly what it is till they do further testing. She said they'll be able to determine what it is by either doing an ultrasound, or by doing surgery and taking a piece of Maverick's liver to test. Can't your vet run those tests, too?

I hope all goes well with your baby, too. I know how you're feeling.

post #6 of 7
Thread Starter 
There is no way I would agree to a biopsy, even if the vet suggested it, her first comment on his bloods were 'is he still alive', it seems he was incredibly lucky to get through a dental with his ALT levels, so I wouldnt risk a second one, and they need sedation for an ultrasound, which I wouldnt be too happy with so soon after a GA. Realistically, we are only looking at months with him, and it is made harder by the fact he was picked up as a stray, we dont know anything about him and it isnt' just his liver enzymes that are out.
post #7 of 7
I came across this website when I was doing research last night regarding liver diseases in cats. Maybe it'll help:


Milk thistle is supposed to be beneficial in cats that have liver disease. I talked to my vet again today and discussed it with her, and she recommends trying it. I'm gonna order some for Maverick, and my vet is also gonna put him on some meds to help combat against his liver's deterioration.

I wish I could offer more advice, but I'm as blind about this as you are, Booktigger. This is a first-time experience for me, too.

Good luck with your baby's treatment.
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