My cat went to the vet this morning. Is there any hope at all?

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
I am sitting here in disbelief, with tears running freely down my face. I have to manage my business, and it is impossible to do so and will remain very difficult in my present condition.

I posted yesterday about my cat's perceived distended tummy on this thread: My male cat has a swollen abdomen, and I am feeling extremely anxious today.

Well, I was at the vet bright and early today. This vet is standing in for my regular vet who is on holiday. It is a small satellite vet station, as we are rurally based. He is young and seemingly inexperienced (perhaps recently qualified?), but took his time to do a thorough check-up.

At first, he said that there didn't seem to be any Ascites present in the cat's belly, but after further prodding, he decided to draw out fluid with a syringe from Gryskat's belly. And he managed to fill the syringe within seconds. It is therefore clearly Ascites. The fluid was yellow in colour and appeared to be slightly cloudy.

He will now submit the syringe content for testing but has told me that we are looking at FIP as the most likely diagnosis. He did admit to me that testing for FIP is fraught with some difficulty (I don't know why), and it is always difficult to give a clear diagnosis in this respect. He has also told me that whatever the final verdict is, the prognosis is very poor, and I must prepare to part with my cat in the coming days or weeks.

He has ruled out heart function as a possibility.

I find this extremely hard to bear, and it will only become harder for me in the coming days and weeks. What other potential contributors could there be to Ascites, other than FIP, cancer or organ failure? Is there a condition that could be less serious?

I believe that there is a drug that is very promising in curing FIP. However, the vet told me in no uncertain terms that I can forget about getting it in my country (South Africa) :(

Is there any hope at all? Am I to resign myself to absolute hopelessness and my beloved furbaby to a quick passing?
 

Maurey

Maine Coon Madness
Super Cat
Joined
Jan 21, 2021
Messages
991
Purraise
1,098
How has he ruled out heart issue as a cause? This isn’t definitively doable without an ECG.

Wet FIP is very much treatable, just extortionately expensive.

I’d get a second opinion from a more experienced vet at a better equipped vet office. Are you able to travel? This isn’t something to wait on, imo. I’d go to the nearest well rated emergency vet in your position.
 

FeebysOwner

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
13,959
Purraise
18,623
Location
Central FL (Born in OH)
Take a look at the article link (below) and read about the most accurate test/treatment they currently have for FIP. Ask your vet what type of test is being performed. However, even this PCR test is not one that can 100% confirm FIP. Most of the time, the test does confirm the coronavirus - which about 80% of the cat population has. But, coronavirus does NOT always mutate into FIP, so the testing is not a guarantee. The only way it would be a near guarantee is if the coronavirus is not present at all. But, even then, there have been cases of a false negative. Also, within this link is another link to the FIP Warriors, a FB group that connects those who are dealing/have dealt with this disease.
Diagnosing FIP | Tests for Feline Infectious Peritonitis | FIP Treatment
 

fionasmom

TCS Member
Staff Member
Forum Helper
Joined
Jun 21, 2014
Messages
5,312
Purraise
7,660
Location
Los Angeles
While most of the reasons for ascites in a cat are not exactly great, there are several other possibilities. Some vets do an ultrasound of the abdomen to see if there are other issues which might be the cause. As for heart disease, the vet can't tell that by looking and you do need an ECG.
 

kittenmittens84

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Sep 30, 2019
Messages
615
Purraise
595
Go on Facebook and join the group FIP Warriors 5.0, they can get you all the info you need.
I first joined the group when my cat was diagnosed with FIP more than 2 years ago. One of the very first success stories in the group was an oriental shorthair from South Africa with very advanced dry FIP - the owners were able to get the drug in SA and treat her.

The availability is much wider now than it was 2 years ago so it’s worth seeing if you can get it in South Africa. There may even be a country-specific FB group they can point you toward. At one point the admin team of the group managed to get GS to a cat owner who lived on a coffee plantation on a remote Indonesian island only accessible by boat, they’re pretty dedicated!
 

StanAndAlf

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
May 27, 2021
Messages
353
Purraise
399
I just past this during a scroll on Facebook and though of you. I've asked what treatment method they used and if they get back to me I'll let you know - assuming this really is FIP

Screenshot_20210917-141450_Facebook.jpg
 

kittenmittens84

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Joined
Sep 30, 2019
Messages
615
Purraise
595
I just past this during a scroll on Facebook and though of you. I've asked what treatment method they used and if they get back to me I'll let you know - assuming this really is FIP

View attachment 395484
Assuming that’s Perth, Australia it’s probably remdesivir. Vets in Australia somehow got permission to prescribe remdesivir for FIP- it’s a prodrug of GS-441524 so it works similarly.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #8

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
How has he ruled out heart issue as a cause? This isn’t definitively doable without an ECG.

Wet FIP is very much treatable, just extortionately expensive.

I’d get a second opinion from a more experienced vet at a better equipped vet office. Are you able to travel? This isn’t something to wait on, imo. I’d go to the nearest well rated emergency vet in your position.
Thank you for your response.

The vet only listened to his heart with a stethoscope. This is one of the reasons that I am a bit hesitant with this particular veterinary clinic's capabilities. Travel is a problem as I am without a vehicle during the day, and stuck for long hours in my retail store that I have to man by myself. However, my mind is such a mess at the moment - I will no doubt have to make a plan to travel to a more comprehensive facility asap.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #9

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
Thank you to everyone for responding!

I actually had quite a productive day yesterday, in that I found the site for FIP warriors, and immediately sent an enquiry. I have already received a response.

I also found a local group manned by a lady who I believe to be a proper Angel on Earth, who sent me valuable information on FIP diagnoses and contact information of sources who can legally sell Remdesivir in South Africa to veterinarians. I managed to obtain the vet's cellphone number, and the poor man has since been inundated with Whatsapp messages from me. I have sent him all the diagnostic information that I obtained from the local group, as well as the contact details of the Remdesivir suppliers. He has apparently done a Rivalta test and has sent the fluid sample away to a lab, and we are awaiting results - if he is satisfied that it is a FIP diagnosis, he will order the Remdesivir for me.

I am however very anxious at the time that this can potentially take! I do believe that every day that goes past in which Gryskat is missing out on treatment, is a day in which his odds diminish. It is not quite the start of the business day yet in South Africa, but I am standing ready to start phoning them for news and to apply a bit of pressure in a moment.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #10

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
I just past this during a scroll on Facebook and though of you. I've asked what treatment method they used and if they get back to me I'll let you know - assuming this really is FIP
What a precious kitty! Thank you for sharing this story! There is hope after all! I cannot tell you how this has affected me emotionally.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #12

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
no updates? Im guessing he died. . . .
Good grief, that is not the case at all!

After a lot of effort and 8 days in emergency vet care with a feeding tube inserted, my boy started FIP treatment with Remdesivir. He has been back home almost two weeks, and we are now on day 18 of his subcutaneous injections. He is flourishing - back to his normal self, eating huge amounts of food, playing, running, grooming himself... he is virtually indistinguishable from a 100% healthy cat.

There is hope after all for FIP cats. The future is looking very bright for Gryskat, and I am looking forward to him being entirely cured once the 84 days of treatment and observation are done.
 

yokosmom

TCS Member
Kitten
Joined
Oct 10, 2021
Messages
5
Purraise
5
Good to hear, IO wish you and Gryskat well. I just put my cat down yesterday. First guess was cancer and 2nd guess was FIP. His lungs, chest and abdomen was full of fluid
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #14

LizaS33

TCS Member
Thread starter
Young Cat
Joined
Sep 15, 2021
Messages
21
Purraise
57
Good to hear, IO wish you and Gryskat well. I just put my cat down yesterday. First guess was cancer and 2nd guess was FIP. His lungs, chest and abdomen was full of fluid
I am so sorry to hear that! Hugs! My thoughts are with you, it is insanely hard to deal with the death of a beloved furbaby. :bawling2::bawling2::bawling2:
Thinking of you 🤗
 
Top