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FCK (Flat Chested Kitten) Defect

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
I started a thread in Pregnant Cats and Kitten Care about Layla's diagnosis of FCK and her poor prognosis. I found an old article about it on the site, but no other threads. Julia mentioned that others on the site have had cats survive despite of the defect and I'm looking for any further information.

Amy
post #2 of 19
http://www.thecatsite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=66669

Amy, here's one, it's got some other links in it. I think there were more around that time. I remember someone posted photos of a little "coat" they had made to support the chest.

I'll keep looking for that one.

~Julia
post #3 of 19
Godiva's Sneakers had an FCK kitten in her litter.
post #4 of 19
Yep! He's fine now... his chest is still flat, so we're not out of the woods yet. I massaged his ribs towards the proper position several times a day and held him to cry (it broke my heart, but I had to do it) to develop his lungs and diaphragm. Be careful, though.. don't do the massages if his zyphoid (I think that's the bone... the little one that is inbetween the lowest ribs) is turned inward, you could do serious damage.
post #5 of 19
I forgot to add that I'm sending vibes to Layla... give her extra hugs for me.
post #6 of 19
I know a fellow breeder that had a flat chested kitten in one of her litters. He grew up to be completely normal...his chest even corrected itself to a certain extent.

I had one in a litter several years ago, but we weren't as lucky with her. We ended up having to euthanize her at 4 weeks of age because she was going downhill.

Good Luck!
post #7 of 19
Wow! Most report I have read said that it was kinder to euthenize right away cause FCK's always die. I didn't know they could grow out of it in some cases! That's a great thing to know!
post #8 of 19
Thread Starter 
I just spoke more to my mother who said that the vet made the point of pointing out Layla's concave sternum. The official diagnosis was "severe pectus excavadum." Mom thinks he was planning on putting her to sleep today, but when he saw her tear up changed it to "let's take it week to week." Since the vet visit, mom said she has not been active and seems to be having more and more trouble with her breathing every hour. Once she reaches the point (if there is one) of appearing uncomfortable she will have her euthanized. Unfortunately, she doesn't think she can bear to be there, so I have offered to take in and have DH bury her when the time comes. At this point, we'd really rather her die with my mother. Luckily mom has this week and next off for vacation, so she will be around when she passes.

I have shed so many tears this afternoon. When she was born, she wasn't breathing and Ruby tried to kill her (she went for her neck immediately), but we got her breathing and she has lived for 8.5 weeks. Now I wish we'd let nature take its course, but at the same time I know she had known love for 8 weeks. I don't know which is better... *sigh*
post #9 of 19
This is like what we call "swimmers" in puppies, right?
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cearbhaill View Post
This is like what we call "swimmers" in puppies, right?
I think someone mentioned that in my other thread. I guess in puppies it is treatable, but in Layla's case its not.
post #11 of 19
Google it ......... I found this when I googled ............

Department of Clinical Studies, Veterinary Hospital, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.

Severe pectus excavatum sternal deformity in a 3-month-old kitten was repaired by use of percutaneous circumcostal and circumsternal sutures to coapt the sternal deformity to an external splint made from thermoplastic material. One year after treatment, the kitten remained free of clinical signs of the disease or complications from the repair. The technique represents a conservative method of repair of pectus excavatum deformities in immature animals.
post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pami View Post
Google it ......... I found this when I googled ............

Department of Clinical Studies, Veterinary Hospital, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia 19104.

Severe pectus excavatum sternal deformity in a 3-month-old kitten was repaired by use of percutaneous circumcostal and circumsternal sutures to coapt the sternal deformity to an external splint made from thermoplastic material. One year after treatment, the kitten remained free of clinical signs of the disease or complications from the repair. The technique represents a conservative method of repair of pectus excavatum deformities in immature animals.
There was no discussion of treatment at the vet visit today. Layla only weighs 9 oz. at 8.5 weeks, so I'd imagine surgery would be risky. I'll have mom call the vet and ask about surgical intervention, but have accepted the fact that it's a lost cause. My mother has virtually unlimited financial resources at her disposal, so the money is not an issue. Unfortunately, when the vet tell you that death is almost a 100% certainty, you forget to ask anything else. Thanks for the info though.
post #13 of 19
Do you mind posting a pic or a link directing me to a recent pic of her?

I'm so sorry about Layla... that's a beautiful name.
post #14 of 19
Layla just passed away she posted in crossing the bridge and shes devastated and needs our support.
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Godiva View Post
Do you mind posting a pic or a link directing me to a recent pic of her?

I'm so sorry about Layla... that's a beautiful name.
Mom took some pics tonight before she passed, so I'll try to get them tomorrow. Until the, here is a pic of her at about 3 weeks (it shows her chest a little bit):

post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pami View Post
Layla just passed away she posted in crossing the bridge and shes devastated and needs our support.

Thanks, Pami. I've been looking at her pictures all afternoon and it is so obvious that something was wrong...

TCS is wonderful in times like these... I just thank god that I've got 5 more beautiful kitties and two little girls that are healthy.
post #17 of 19
Oh AnnasMom, I'm so sorry. I'm so very sorry.
post #18 of 19
I'm sorry it didn't work out for your baby .

Hope had FCK. I watched her and mom since she was 3 weeks old. She has outgrown it completely. The only tell-tale sign is a slight dip behind the shoulder blades. It depends on how severe the FCK is (if the sternum goes inward - maybe this was the case with your baby?). If the chest can't grow and stretch as they get older it is lethal. You can help it by putting slight pressure on the sides of the chest. There is a method for using toilet paper rolls to exert a constant pressure, not sure if mom would allow that though. I remember little Hope's breathe was a mile a minute because she couldn't expand her lungs all the way. She does have a lingering neurological side-effect from what I think was oxygen deprivation but it is minor.
post #19 of 19
Aww no, I thought she was gonna make it
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