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post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
I have a 12 year old girl, Phoebee. She vomits often and has lost alot of weight. Vet did bloodtests and found one of her liver enzymes was very very high. We've had her on steroids which don't seem to be helping. I can't get the liver cocktail into her at all. She eats a vet recommended dry food and canned.
Her stools are often very soft.
The strange thing is she is still very happy and acts normal. Any suggestions?

post #2 of 16
When you can't get it into her, do you mean pills?

I have always found that a little liverworst (it's liver in a tube, in the deli section) is amazing for getting animals to eat their pills. It's gross and smelly and tastes wonderful (it's not bad actually) and you can get it to stick right around all sides of the pill.

I hope she gets better.
post #3 of 16
Please talk to your vet as soon as possible to follow up on this advice

ALT rises occur in cats for a number of reasons but the most likely possibilities in a twelve year old cat are hyperthyroidism, cholangiohepatitis, hepatic lipidosis (if the cat is not eating) and pancreatitis leading to secondary blockage of bile flow. There is a condition in cats in which pancreatitis, cholangiohepatitis and inflammatory bowel disease occur at the same time, which is being referred to as "triad syndrome" or "triaditis" at the current time. Keeping this possibility in mind is a good idea. Usually there is vomiting and variable appetite along with weight loss in cats with this condition.
We usually test for hyperthyroidism when there are rises in liver enzymes in older cats which are discovered in lab work but are not causing clinical signs. This is especially true if there is weight loss, an increase in appetite or an increase in heart rate. Your vet may be reasonably certain this is not present based on the examination. If so, it is just something to file away in case further symptoms develop. It is also a good idea to be sure that there is no evidence of feline leukemia virus and to try to rule out liver cancer through X-rays, ultrasound or biopsy of the liver.

We usually try antibiotics early in cholangiohepatitis because they seem to help some cats. We use amoxicillin and sometimes amoxicillin/metronidazole combinations. I think that it is justifiable to try antibiotics without doing a biopsy or culture of bile, but some vets prefer to do this testing first and that is also definitely justifiable. If there continues to be evidence of liver disease after antibiotic therapy and recheck of the lab values in two to four weeks, then we usually do feel best if we can get a biopsy of the liver to see for sure what is happening, if that is possible. Sometimes biopsy results don't help much but it is still worth the effort, I think.

Over the long run, we have had the best luck with ursodiol (Actigall Rx) and have just started using SAM-e within the last six months. I really don't have a feel for how well SAM-e is working, yet, but it is recommended by several veterinarians who are very knowledgeable about liver disease.

Most cats with cholangiohepatitis seem to do well for a long period of time and many of our patients have lived out their normal life span despite having this condition and it is possible to treat hyperthyroidism and the triad syndrome, as well.

Mike Richards, DVM 4/6/2001
From my experiences with vomiting, weight loss and elevated liver enzymes, I would urge you to ask for X-rays, ultrasound, and the special test (SPEC-fPL test) to help diagnose or rule out pancreatitis. The results of all these tests will give you and your vet a very good starting point. (The ultrasound is necessary for finding or being able to rule out liver cancer as well. Unfortunately very important because cancer can also be a possibility.)

Food low in fat or just lower in fat can be helpful, so please talk to your vet about trying a few different things. Do NOT offer ANY high-fat treats, including chicken with the skin on, etc. (For a cat with liver disease even oil containing nutritional supplements can be too much to handle.)
post #4 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info.
I disolve the steroids and shoot them in her mouth with a syringe. A bit messy but atleast she gets most of it.

She has been tested for pancreatitus and hypothyroidism.

We really can't afford a liver biopsy and ultrasound and what will it tell us? That she is dying? The treatment would be the same as it is now so we have opted to keep on the steroids and try to get her down to one or 2 a day and watch for signs of diabetes which can be a direct result of steroid treatment.

I was just wondering if anyone had a personal experience and what worked for them.

Friends say she needs to be put down, can't keep cleaning up vomit every other night....but she seems so normal and happy. I'm sure she must feel some discomfort or nauseausness but she doesn't show it.....
post #5 of 16
Has the vet recommended a new diet for her? I'm sorry I don't know anything about liver enzymes.

My cats started throwing up daily on purina cat food. They are now on nutro cat food. They throw up much less now. Hope she feels better!
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
Yes she is on Hills Kd. She was on a previous gastro special hard but we switched to to see if anything changes. Sadly it hasn't.
post #7 of 16
I'm sorry to hear that. Hang in there. I know how it feels to clean up vomit all the time.

Hopefully someone will have more insight for you.
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
I stopped the steriods as they made no difference to her vommitting and soft stools.
Yesterday I took her back to the vet and she did a thorough abdominal feel and sadly I report that she things there is a mass about the size of a mandarin orange.

I am bringing her in again to let her feel again, just to be sure.

At this point we have decided to do nothing. Phoebee is not in any obvious pain, and seems to be a happy girl, except for her vomitting etc.

I gave her 1/3 of a natural digestive enzyme last night with her wet food and she tolerated it and no vomit.
post #9 of 16
Originally Posted by labbysmom View Post

Friends say she needs to be put down, can't keep cleaning up vomit every other night....but she seems so normal and happy. I'm sure she must feel some discomfort or nauseausness but she doesn't show it.....
I'm sorry, I have nothing useful to add, but if my friends told me to put my cat down, just because cleaning up vomit every other night was hard work, I'd tell them where to go!

to your baby and bless you for loving and taking care of her
post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you
Unfortunately things are going downhill very fast. Since my last post, Phoebee has been vomitting every day and sometimes more than once. Yesterday in the morning she gave out a horrid yeowl and I raced into the kitchen and got her outside before she vommitted until nothing but dry heaves were the result. Then she went to the side garden and an eruption of diareahha with all the sound effects took place.

Last night she was sitting the way she does when I know she is uncomfortable and a few minutes later she jumped from our bed and vomitted a ton of liquid brown stuff. Then she went into her litter box and errupted again. I mean sound effects and diarreaha galore.

When she sees her food she just stares at it but then has some nibbles and then eats more.

Its become obvious that whatever is going on is going on big time now. When I look in her eyes I can tell she is not a happy girl. Hopefully I can get her back to the vet to get some advice. Should we try surgery? Should we leave her be?

Thanks for listening to my ramble,
post #11 of 16
Poor Phoebe! I think you need to take her back to the vets and see what they say. Perhaps a second opinion might help? I know you said that you couldn't afford to pay for more tests etc, but perhaps it might be worth talking to your vet about some kind of payment plan? You'd be surprised at how flexible they can be. Failing that, it might be worth looking at a 0% credit card?

Sending you lots of and for you and your little girl
post #12 of 16
Thread Starter 
I am going to take her back just so the vet can confirm the mass.
When I talk about her vomitting, I'm not saying its a little bit of it, most times it amounts to a 12" long puddle of brown liquid.

Does anyone have any good cleaning suggestions? I use Spot Shot that does a pretty good job. However I worry about bacteria as I have a very young granddaughter around alot.

And yes, I am feeling it more that she is not happy.
post #13 of 16
I'm so sorry to hear about Phoebee. My heart, vibes and prayers go out to you and her.

If you have time before you go to the vet today look at the Yahoo Feline Groups. They offer such helpful info from other cat owners going through just about the same things. This has been so helpful for me and my cats issues. They can give you suggestions or tips that have greatly helped them or what didn't work at all. Then you can maybe have more info to take to your vet and see if it might help and/or work.? My dog also has severe liver issues and has now been taking milk thistle and this has helped so very much. I just thought I would mention this because I see under one of the feline goups that this widley used for cats and liver issues.

Also, the Feline Yahoo Groups might have an area for growths. I did a quick look and they do have groups for liver and info on nausea. Hope this helps! Keep us updated and ask if you have any other questions and/or concerns. People her are quite helpful!
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
I wanted to let you all know that our girl Phoebee passed away today. She died humanely and with her mommy telling her what a sweet girl she was and thanking her for being such a wonderful companion.
Asti, and Chablis were waiting at the Rainbow Bridge for her.
post #15 of 16
I'm so sorry! Poor little sweet Phoebee. You've been her and now she's your . My and go out to you! Again, I'm so sorry for your loss.
post #16 of 16
Aww, I'm sorry.
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