Does this sound like hyperthyroidism?

rawlins02

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My 10 yo Lexi hasn't been sleeping much. I only discovered recently that cats sleep on average 12-18 hours/day. She never did sleep much during the day, but now she may be sleeping much of the night, but that's pretty much it. I believe lack of sleep has made her more skittish than usual.

More importantly she has a ravenous appetite. Always was very food obsessed (perhaps was stray during first year of life), but this is beyond hungry. I checked her medical records. Had a T4 test prior to dental cleaning last year:
April 2022
T4 2.9 ug/dL [0.8 - 4.7]
BUN/UREA 25 mg/dL [16 - 37]
CREA 2.0 mg/dL [0.9 - 2.3]
heart rate 120

May 2023
heart rate 130

So no elevated HR, which is good. We're hoping to get a same day appointment tomorrow. Getting in to see a vet soon is very hard in southern Delaware. I know it's common to do a free T4 and/or T3 suppression test if symptomatic and T4 is in upper half of range. Lastly, I read a study that found that 2 in 5 cats had this disease. Can't recall the population they sampled.
 

emocatowner

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It's definitely worth re-doing the test. My dude had T4 at 3.5 one month, then it spiked to 6 a month later, so it can go real fast. The meds worked great at keeping it under control, and he was very good about taking them, once he got used to it.

Keep an eye on the kidneys too. That creatinine is already kinda high. Hyperthyroidism is kinda like being on crack, it makes all the organs go into overdrive, and it feels amazing for a while, until everything starts wearing out and things get very bad. But what this also means is that sometimes it masks kidney disease, by making it look like the kidneys are more functional than they really are, until treatment starts, and their true state is revealed. The vet will likely want to repeat those tests too, and do another round in a few weeks, because of this.

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism include excess energy, anxiety, confusion, being ravenously hungry, losing weight in spite of eating a lot, increased thirst and urination, and the fur looking a bit spikey. My dude was playing like a kitten, which he's never done before, I was almost sorry to start treating it, but it would have done way too much damage otherwise.

With proper treatment, cats with hyperthyroidism can have a good life for many years. He'll probably be ok if you can't get an instant appointment, but he should definitely be seen in the next couple weeks.
 
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rawlins02

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Thanks folks. The clinic we hope to get to tomorrow is an hour away. We have first appointment at another place closer in 4 weeks. I'm going to call today to get on their cancellation list. Will update soon.
 

IndyJones

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Hyperthyroidism can also be extremly subtle too.

Kabuto had none of the typical symptoms except weightloss. It was only discovered at his annual checkup that he had it and because the vet found a grade 3 heart murmer and fluid in his chest (CHD).

It is like the throttle for the metabolism is missing or stuck opened.
 
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rawlins02

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Some positive new at vet visit. We got really lucky to be seen by an excellent clinician. Very generous with his time in discussing hyperthyroidism and other health aspects. Lexi's heart rate was a cool 130, her temperature was normal, and no palpable goiter. Results of blood tests by Monday.
 

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IF you find out that it is HT. Please know that you have another option besides the pills. There is a treatment called I-131 (Radioactive Iodine shot). It's not cheap, but they measure the size of the tumor give them one shot and then they have to stay in the hospital until the radiation in their pee drops to an acceptable level. 1 shot, 1 time....5-7 day hospital stay. 98% CURED rate.

I wasn't going to pill my cat 2x's a day for the rest of their lives. Best decision I made with regards to her health.
 
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rawlins02

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Yes indeed. The "gold standard" it would appear. I'm with you on that.
 
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IndyJones

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For Kabuto not only do I not have the money on disability but he also isn't a good caditate for iodine treatment because his heart is stage 3 murmer and early chf. Also he is extremly bonded to me and a social butterfly and keeping him isolated for so long seems unfair.
 
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rawlins02

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Just spoke with the vet. Good news. All blood work is normal. Kidney function too. Perhaps just a hungry kitty that knows she has a sucker for her whining. He's going to research why she might not be sleeping like most kitties do. Suggested we might try melatonin. Oh well, I will not overfeed. Maybe will use the autofeeder to dispense some kibble 4-5 am. We are both insomniacs.
 
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