Feline Hyperthyroidism - New Perspectives on an "Old" Disease

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Published on: 16.11.2017

Presenter:

Martha Cannon BA VetMB DSAM(fel) MRCVS
RCVS Specialist in Feline Medicine

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About The Webinar

Hyperthyroidism is a common problem of the older cat that can be highly rewarding to treat.

In most cases diagnosis is straightforward using serum total T4 as the standard screening test. However, in a significant minority of cats total T4 is normal despite the presence of hyperthyroidism, especially early in the course of disease and/or when there is concurrent chronic kidney disease. This makes diagnosis more challenging, and this webinar will illustrate when to use additional diagnostic tests and how to interpret total T4, free T4 and TSH levels in hyperthyroid and euthyroid cats.

Once the diagnosis is reached there are a wide range of treatment options available: radioactive iodine treatment is considered the treatment of choice when it is available but can cause post-treatment hypothyroidism. Recent evidence indicates that iatrogenic hypothyroidism can be present even when total T4 is normal, and that when it does occur it can contribute to the development of chronic kidney disease which can be a significant problem. We will review the current advice regarding diagnosis and management of iatrogenic hypothyroidism, and post-treatment monitoring for cats that have received radio-Iodine treatment. Long term medical management with methimazole or carbimazole in tablet, liquid or transdermal formulations, surgical thyrtoidectomy and dietary management are other potential choices which may be better suited to particular cases. We review some of their advantages and disadvantages, with particular reference to long term outcomes and potential adverse effects.

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