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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello,

My 13 y/o cat, Kit was just diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. She has had some weight loss and he vet felt a lump on her thyroid and the blood test just confirmed the diagnosis The vet had two treatment options, either medication or radioactive iodine therapy. I think we are going to opt to try medication first to see how well it works.

I wanted to see if anyone else has gone through this and what their opinions are, or if there are other options. My vet has been great, but they aren’t always up to speed on the latest developments.

Thank you
Brian
 

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Samantha's Father and 1/2 sister both had hyperthyroidism about 6 years ago and had the radioactive iodine therapy and they are both alive at 18 and 16.

 

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Hyperthyroidism can mask CRF, so the first step is to use meds for several months and stabilize the thyroid. If bloodwork shows that the kidneys are good, she's in otherwise good health and you have the funds...then I'd do the iodine (assuming the post procedure precautions are reasonable--see below). It cures the problem and you won't have to deal with daily meds, regular blood tests, medication adjustments etc.

I've known a couple people that have done the iodine treatment and it was very successful. The worst part is the precautions that you have to take after the treatment. Every state has it's own requirements...I've heard of a mandatory two week stay at the treatment facility to a couple days stay and 2 weeks isolation at home. So that is a consideration when making your decision.
 

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I am sorry to hear that Kit was diagnosed with hyper-T. My baby, Spock, was diagnosed with it as well in March and has been on medication called, Methimazole. At first, he was on liquid form of the med but switched to transdermal gel (cream) that I can apply to his ears because he lost appetite. If Kit is on Methimazole, please watch out for the side effect, such as stomach upset or vomiting. It seems that it is strong medication. Switching to transdermal helped a lot on mine's appetite and he gained 1 lb :) I am putting him on the medication and planning to treat him with iodine treatment sometime this year, I hope....

I am running out of time so I cannot say much now, but there is wonderful support group that you can count on.
feline-hyperT : A support list for people whose cats have been diagnosed as hyperthyroid (hypothyroid also welcome).
Please, please join and share your questions or concerns. In this group, there are many experts in hyper-T and it is amazing how informative and knowledable people are. I hope Kit will feel better soon!
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thank you for the information everyone. And thank you Spockally for the link to the other thread. I am going to have to print that out, there is a lot of information there. (And thank you Laurif!)

I didn't know about the hyperactivity as a symptom and really haven’t seen it. Her appetite seems about the same too, accept maybe she is a little more vocal around dinner time if I am running late.

I will try the ”low and slow” approach and see how she responds to the meds and reconsider the Iodine treatment in the future. My main concern about the radiation is that we have a small baby in the house, but Kit doesn’t go near her so that’s probably not a problem. I believe the vet said she would be at the treatment center for 5 days.

Does anyone have experience with the trans-dermal medication? I think that would be best but I am concerned about it rubbing off somewhere and the baby getting into it. IS that a problem or does it absorb pretty quick?


Thanks again
Brian
 

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I didn't know about the hyperactivity as a symptom and really haven’t seen it.


Hyperactivity can manifest both internally and externally. Internally, everything's working harder. Cats with uncontrolled hyperT often develop heart murmurs, their kidneys and other organs are forced to work harder than normal, and their metabolism speeds up so much that they can't maintain weight, no matter how much they eat. Externally, hyperT cats may have voracious appetites; become more vocal; be restless, wakeful, and/or more active; and may be short-tempered. Some cats exhibit none of these behaviors or exhibit them subtly enough as to not be readily noticeable. Since this is a progressive disease, these or other symptoms will worsen over time if the disease is not managed effectively or cured.

My main concern about the radiation is that we have a small baby in the house, but Kit doesn’t go near her so that’s probably not a problem.


You should discuss that concern both with the I-131 treatment clinic and with your pediatrician. I suspect they'll both put your mind at ease.

Does anyone have experience with the trans-dermal medication? I think that would be best but I am concerned about it rubbing off somewhere and the baby getting into it. IS that a problem or does it absorb pretty quick?
I've never used transdermal on my hyperT cats, but there are lots of folks on the hyperT mailing list that Spockally linked above who do. If you join that list, I'm sure they can answer your questions about it. From what I have read, the medication is absorbed fairly quickly, but the residual gel needs to be cleaned off of the cat's ear between applications to prevent buildup and irritation to the ears.

Laurie
 

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Brian: I am using transdermal to Spock. There are lots of people using it in Hyper-T forum I attached the link the other day and lots of experts with good knowledge about it are there. I am still in learning process about this hyper-t and trasdermal, so I highly recommend you to sign up for this group (of course, it is free!) to ask more questions about transdermal and radiation effect. There are sooo many people who already had I-131 treatment done on their kitties. I am very sure that you can learn a lot from this forum!!! I can tell you only the things I know about transdermal and I hope it helps :)

Spock was on liquid form of Methimazole about a month. His initial T4 was 7.2 and it went down to 3.5. I was happy but he started losing appetite. I was very concerned because he lost 0.5 lbs and I did not want him to lose weight (in Hyper-T, weight loss is big issue) plus I did not want to go though vomiting/nausea, etc. I consulted the hyper-T forum people and they highly recommended transdermal gel. I asked my vet about it and he found local compound pharmacy that makes it. About a week since he was switched to transdermal, his appetite became normal and gained weight. As Laurie said, it is absorbed real good. You need to rub it to inner side of kittie's ears using your finger, so you need to have finger cot if it is available in pharmacy to protect yourself from absorbing in your body. I usually cut finger areas of latex gloves and use it to apply. You take time to rub it and make sure there is no more left on ears or finger cot anymore. It stays there and you do not see it, so I do not think your baby can get it. The cream that I am using is just like Lubridum hand lotion. If you rub it taking long time enough, you do not see it or feel it. However, this is mine from my pharmacy. Each pharmacy might use different type of base (the cream to mix the med, Methimazole). Mine uses the base called Lipoderm. I heard that this is good quality that helps Methimazole to be absorbed in kittie's bloodstream good. This is the one the Hyper-T forum people highly recommend. Another pharmacy that I contacted recently uses two other kinds of base and the forum people did not know about the base so I did not want to use it. Also, it is better to get concentration of 2.5mg per 0.1ml. At first, I did not know about it, so my vet sent prescription of 1.25mg per 0.1ml. Spock did not respond to 0.1ml twice a day so the vet said to increase to 0.2ml twice a day to get 2.5mg each. Since the bigger amount is hard to be absorbed, it is better to have higher concentration with less amount to apply. Now I am using 2.5mg per 0.1ml concentraion. I apply 0.1ml in morning and 0.15ml at night. His T4 now is 2.3. Since the absorption rate (I heard sometimes only 40%) varies on each kittie, the medication, etc., it might be necessary to have more gel to achieve T4 level in range. It is highly recommended to start "low and slow" starting with 1.25mg twice a day and then gradually increase if necessary. It is much easier to increase little by little with transdermal. Also, another caution to take when ordering transdermal is about type of pen. It seems that there are two types of pen in compound pharmacy market. The good one is "syringe" that you kind of push to squeeze the cream for the necessary amount. It is easy to use and measure the correct amount. The bad one is "twist pen." People on the hyper-T forum were complaining about how hard to get the correct amount by twisting something on the top. It seems to be hard to adjust the amount if increase of amount is necessary. There is some online compund pharmacy that you can order but I think Wedgwood pharmacy sends this twist pen and people were not happy with it. Also, it is important to keep kittie's ears clean. It is recommended to clean with water or witch hazel every other day or every 2-3 days depending on the residue amount on ears. Before I start applying the gel, I watched the video on Youtube which Forrest in Hyper-T forum made with his hyper-T kittie, Lance. I can attach the link if you are interested in it. I think that is all for now from me but I am very sure that people on this forum can help you more! Hope Kit feels better and enjoy your baby!!!
 
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