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Feline Hyperthyroidism

Published: March 29, 2010

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Feline hyperthyroidism is one of the most common diseases in older cats. But even human companions of furry felines who are aware of the disease may be unaware of how successful radioactive-iodine treatment can be in curing hyperthyroidism.

Radioactive-iodine treatment, surgery, and medication are the three options that can be used to treat your cat’s hyperthyroidism. Of the three, radioactive-iodine treatment is the safest and most effective in curing hyperthyroidism. This treatment has been used in human medicine for more than 50 years and in veterinary medicine for 20 years. Which treatment is best for your cat will be based on his or her medical history and specific circumstances

Cats who receive radioactive-iodine treatment do not suffer from any serious side effects and do not need to be anesthetized to receive the treatment. The veterinarian administers the special iodine with an injection, enabling it to be absorbed by the thyroid gland via the bloodstream. Once in the thyroid, the iodine destroys the overactive portions of the gland. A treated cat must remain in the hospital until the radiation level has fallen to within acceptable, regulated limits.

One injection of radioactive iodine is successful in curing approximately 95% of all feline hyperthyroidism cases.

Common signs & symptoms of feline hyperthyroidism:

  • Weight loss
  • Increased/decreased appetite
  • Vomiting
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased urination
  • Hyperactivity
  • Lethargy
  • Diarrhea
  • Heart murmur
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Increased heart rate
  • Arrhythmias
  • Fever
  • Vocal changes