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Worried about my cat with Chronic Kidney Disease
LilyTortie posted:
Hello. My cat, Lily, was diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease in Jan. 2009- a few days after I adopted her. I had a feeling that something was wrong with her because I noticed, as soon as I brought her home, that she was urinating frequently. She was 10 1/2 years old then. The vet prescribed her subcu. fluids twice a week and Pepcid once a day. Her kidneys were stable for several months after that, but then the disease started progressing. In March of this year, her fluids were increased to every other day. We also found out in March that she was borderline hyperthyroid. I took her to the vet again two weeks ago. She was 9.8 lbs. in Jan. '09, and down to 5.8 lbs. two weeks ago. Her vet said that her kidney values had worsened again, but she thought that her kidney disease was not the only cause of her weight loss (her appetite has been good, more or less). The vet mentioned several months ago that Lily could have Inflammatory Bowel Disease, but because my only income right now is from disability, I haven't been able to afford the x-rays and other expensive tests the vet recommended to diagnose it. The tests would cost an entire month's income (although if I have to, I guess I will just have to stop getting cable and start getting my food from the food bank so I can afford her tests and other care). She doesn't have diarrhea, which I've read is one of the main symptoms of Inflammatory Bowel Disease, though.
But what I am really worried about now is that the vet said (after her appt. two weeks ago) that what could be causing a lot of Lily's weight loss is intestinal lymphoma. You see, I lost my dear cat, Paws, to lymphoma in May '08. She didn't have the intestinal kind though. She had a tumor in her upper chest that was pushing against her trachea, causing it to be shaped like the letter C; and a second tumor between her eyes that was a lump the size of a golf ball in her forehead. So I know how horrible it is to have someone who is like your child die from lymphoma, and I don't think I could handle that again.
Anyway, now Lily's subcu. fluids have been increased to every day; and her vet prescribed Reglan (in addition to the Pepcid), also every day, for her nausea. I asked the vet what stage her Chronic Kidney Disease was in, and she told me that it was moderate at 4.2- with 5 being advanced. I was worried that she might be a little anemic because her gums seemed to be a little paler, but her hematocrit level is okay.
The good news now is- right after her last appt., I decided to take a chance and see if I could coax her to eat any of the kidney diet foods. I tried to get her to eat them shortly after she was diagnosed, but she just turned her nose up at them. But I hoped now that just maybe if I mixed some Fancy Feast or some of her favorite treats up with them, then she might eat them a little. So I bought samples of all of them- and she has been eating them, even without the Fancy Feast or treats! And I don't know if it is because of the kidney food, or the daily fluids, or the Reglan, or a combination- but she seems to be a little better these last two weeks. She has gained half a pound! She is up to 6.3 lbs. now. So I'm still worried, but I am keeping my fingers crossed that she is improving. She is 13 years old now. I hope I can keep her around for another 2 1/2 years. I would really appreciate any advice anyone could give me on what else I could, or should do for her. Thanks.
LilyTortie responded:
I forgot to mention that Lily has also been on Epakitin for several months now, as well as Miralax (which I mix in her cat milk) for her constipation. Her vet just increased her Epakitin from 1/8 tsp. twice a day, to 1/4 tsp. twice a day, as her phosphorus level is still rather high. I also give her a feline multivitamin/mineral supplement and salmon oil (for her skin and coat) every day.
Byroney_WebMD_Staff responded:
Welcome LilyTortie and thanks for posting about your dear Lily and your kitty who passed away, Paws.

I can tell how much you care about them and that you're working together with your vet as a team to do everything possible to help Lily. I think it sounds very positive that she's gained half a pound!

Maybe some of our other members will have suggestions or will offer words of support, too. We're all pulling for you and Lily!

Keep us updated,

Every dog has his day - but the nights are reserved for the cats ~ Unknown


William Draper, DVM, better known as "Dr. Will," is a well-known small animal practitioner in the Atlanta, GA area. He grew up in Inglewood,...More

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