Cat With Hyperthyroidism

Antonio65

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Thanks Antonio, I will ask about that. I believe that will be done down in California as none of the vets in my area do those types of things.
It's a thing that nearly nobody does, it's more typical of those facilities who do radio iodine, because it's key to the therapy. Without a scintigraphy, the dosage of radio iodine will be a guess, and this might be not too good for an HT kitty.
It's sort of an x-ray, but has to be done under a sedation, so it might be a good idea if the scintigraphy and the radio iodine are being done during the same session of sedation.
 

lakeriedog

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Just a quick update on my Bucky...I drove her down to Chico California for the treatment on Monday...she had the radio iodine procedure yesterday and so far is doing well. I will know more tomorrow or the next day. I have to say so far, I am very impressed by the professionalism of the staff there and very happy that her accommodations look comfy and clean and I can view her anytime via video and can even speak to her. She will most likely be able to come home on Friday!
 

lakeriedog

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Bucky came home last night, and has been closed up in my master bathroom since then, she's not thrilled about it but neither am I. She meowed quite a bit on the way home but has settled down now. Apparently she was on the highest edge of allowable radiation level for release so only 15 minutes of contact per day is allowed for this first few days. This is going to be a long two weeks for both of us. Her "sister" Holly is confused about the situation and tried to get in with me today. I'll know more about how successful the treatment was after she has some blood work after August 11.
 

Antonio65

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I'm so glad that Bucky is back home with you.
From what you wrote, I assume they didn't do any scintigraphy and went for a standard high dosage of I-131, that would explain the high level of radiation Bucky was released with. Did they give you a report that certifies the level of radiation and that it was safe for traveling?
Anyway, two weeks go by rather quickly, and that this adventure will be very likely forgotten by Bucky in no time, but you will remember it forever with pride, believe me :)
 

lakeriedog

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I'm so glad that Bucky is back home with you.
From what you wrote, I assume they didn't do any scintigraphy and went for a standard high dosage of I-131, that would explain the high level of radiation Bucky was released with. Did they give you a report that certifies the level of radiation and that it was safe for traveling?
Anyway, two weeks go by rather quickly, and that this adventure will be very likely forgotten by Bucky in no time, but you will remember it forever with pride, believe me :)
Antonio65, thanks,and no scintigraphy was done. They didn't tell me the exact reading but the paperwork said "when released to your care your pet will have a surface exposure of no more than 10 mR/hr...and I was told that she was at the higher end of what is allowed. I was asked to put her carrier as far away from me as possible on the trip home, and only had to stop once on the 4 hour trip home to clean the carrier (luckily for me I have an SUV so was able to do it without risking her escape.) As for the dosage, the report said she was given 4.42 mCi of radioactive iodine. So far the only adverse reaction I am seeing is softer than normal stool not watery but still not normal. I sent her with her usual food so I think it could be from the treatment or just stress. I do feel bad keeping her confined, and seeing other people say they did not...so am on the fence about it but want to keep my other kitty and myself healthy too. This is definitely an adventure!
 

molly92

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It's definitely up to you and your comfort level how much contact you have with your cat. Urine is where almost all the radioactivity gets excreted, so it's really her litter box that you want to limit exposure to most of all for 2 weeks. I will add that when humans have the same procedure done, doctors don't tell them to isolate from their family, and they've had a higher dose than a cat.

I did let my cat sleep on my lap the night she came home...oops. Maybe I shouldn't have done that. But she was so happy to be home and I was so happy to feel her heart beating at a normal, calm pace that I don't think I'd do it differently. General disclaimer though: anyone who might be pregnant should probably take extra care and not let the radioactive cat on their lap right away!
 

Antonio65

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Antonio65, thanks,and no scintigraphy was done. They didn't tell me the exact reading but the paperwork said "when released to your care your pet will have a surface exposure of no more than 10 mR/hr...and I was told that she was at the higher end of what is allowed. I was asked to put her carrier as far away from me as possible on the trip home, and only had to stop once on the 4 hour trip home to clean the carrier (luckily for me I have an SUV so was able to do it without risking her escape.) As for the dosage, the report said she was given 4.42 mCi of radioactive iodine. So far the only adverse reaction I am seeing is softer than normal stool not watery but still not normal. I sent her with her usual food so I think it could be from the treatment or just stress. I do feel bad keeping her confined, and seeing other people say they did not...so am on the fence about it but want to keep my other kitty and myself healthy too. This is definitely an adventure!
The report they gave me upon releasing my cat stated that the cat received 1.2 mCi of I-131, that sounds about 3.7 times less than yours, and that the radiation emitted was 1.0 uSv/hour/1 meter.
It also said that the maximum allowed radiation is 20 uSv/h/m, so it seems that your Bucky was halfway up the highest level according to the standards of my facility (and probably European regulations).

Frankly I can't remember what my cat's stools were like, probably softer than the usual.
I also left her own food with her at the facility, but I think they wasted most of it. I left 24 cans with her, they gave me 11 cans back, so apparently my cat had eaten 13 cans in 4 days, which is absolutely impossible!

I received instructions not to keep her next to me, limit contacts and cuddling, and be careful with handling her litter for 2 weeks, but I disregarded most of that advice, and my cat laid on my lap that very night.
As molly92 molly92 said, it's up to you.
 

catminionjess

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I'm late to this thread, but congrats to Bucky!
My 15 year old girl was just diagnosed with hyperthyroidism on Friday. She has always been terrible to pill or to give any oral liquid meds so I knew giving her thyroid meds would be a big problem. Advising the vet of that, they gave me a handful of methimazole compounded soft chews to give half twice a day. She's gobbled them up each time so far so I went ahead and ordered a month supply earlier today. I'm interested in the iodine therapy, but they said the closest specialist is the next state over. My vet's computers and phones were down so they couldn't give me more information at the time. And they were kind of dismissive, like she's already 15 if you don't want to do any treatments. How do you find where the closest specialist is? Why isn't there one in one of the biggest states in the U.S.,Texas?
 

molly92

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Here's a list of some in each state:
https://www.marvistavet.com/list-of-facilities.pmlI
I also found these in Texas:
Radioactive Iodine Therapy for Hyperthyroid Cats | V-DIT
Alamo Feline Health Center
Radioiodine (I-131) - Sugar Land Veterinary Specialists
And they were kind of dismissive, like she's already 15 if you don't want to do any treatments.
That's too bad! It sounds like they don't really understand it. It's barely a procedure, just an injection! Where I went they did put my 16 year old under for a moment to do the injection for their own safety, but they assured me it was a very safe anesthetic for an older cat.
 

catminionjess

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Thanks molly92 molly92 . My research hasn't gone that well today so that's really helpful. My vet said the closest specialist was in Oklahoma! That's just another reason I need to find a different vet that actually cares about cats and knows what they're talking about. If the info in the first link is correct, there's a specialist about an hour away.
 

lakeriedog

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I'm so glad to see there is a place closer to you than Oklahoma! I had to drive 4 hours to California from Nevada, but I live in a rural area. I have decided to go ahead and let Miss Bucky stay the full two weeks in the master bath, and have been visiting with her several times a day. She is ready to come out, but isn't yowling or crying. She seems to be doing very well,she is affectionate, playing with the two toys I put in with her and is eating and drinking. So Friday will be freedom day!
 

catminionjess

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Where I'm at, I could drive 4 hours in any direction and still be in TX lol. Yay for Bucky! I'm going to keep giving my girl the meds for now and keep looking into the iodine therapy to see if/when that could be done for her.
 
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