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Cat pancreatitis

Cat Pancreatitis Causes:

The pancreas is a small organ that is located right behind the stomach and the small intestines.

The pancreas has two main functions. The foremost function is to synthesize insulin, which is essential for the metabolism of glucose. The second function is to produce pancreatic enzymes which are vital for digestion of fats. If the pancreas suffers inflammation because of some disease or disorder, it is known as pancreatitis.

Pancreatitis can be either acute or chronic.

Cat pancreatitis can be caused due to a variety of factors. The most common cause of cat pancreatitis is the regular intake of medications. Some antibiotics and anti cancer drugs can cause malfunctioning of the pancreas. Hypercalcemia is another metabolic disorder in which the body of the cat is not able to absorb calcium because of which calcium begins to remain in the blood, can also be responsible for pancreatitis.

Apart from this, trauma to the abdomen of the cat, surgery in the abdomen, shock, feline infections such as calicivirus, liver fluke, toxoplasmosis, disease in the bile duct, inflammatory bowels, and the genetic disposition of the cat may also be responsible for developing pancreatitis. Cats that have suffered pancreatitis in the past are also prone to developing it again.

Cat pancreatitis symptoms are quite different from the symptoms in dogs. Cats may get lethargic and dehydrated. They experience a loss of appetite and subsequently a loss of weight. Some cats may vomit or have abdominal pain. Rapid breathing, fever, arrhythmias and jaundice are also some of the symptoms. If chronic pancreatitis in cats is not paid particular attention to, the cat may develop sepsis or intravascular coagulation and multiple hemorrhages. In case of severe inflammation, the pancreatic enzymes released from the pancreas may automatically begin to digest the organs surrounding the pancreas.

Cat pancreatitis treatment works at several levels. The first goal is to alleviate symptoms by correcting dehydration and providing pain relief. If the cat is vomiting profusely, the treatment will also concentrate on controlling it. Nutritional support is further provided to prevent further weight loss and to prevent complications.

Imbalances of electrolytes and dehydration have to be addressed first since they can prove fatal. Supplemental fluids are usually given through intravenous injections in severe cases to stop pancreatitis in cats. Medications to stop vomiting are also given to the cat. If pancreatitis has been caused due to medications, these medications are stopped immediately and an appropriate alternative therapy is recommended.

  Submitted on February 12, 2010  

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