Severe Non-Regenerative Anemia

momofmaxwell

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Have you tried syringe feeding her and adding extra water? Max Cal by iams is 330 calories per can.A/D is 180 Calories.Food & water is life.Max cal needed to be put through a sieve a couple of times from the tiny tiny bones it has.Otherwise the syringe will stick.NOT GOOD.But is has the highest calorie count for emergencies.I have used it many times.When dehydration and not enough food are present they feel like crap.
 
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sarah super

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Much better and still here, which I wasn't confident about when I last posted.

She's due for a check up this week, but is a lot better. Her last blood tests had her RBC at about 25% IIRC. The message wasn't clear from the vet when he called, but she's significantly better on all metrics. She's running around our house again and playing with the other cats again, and is significantly stronger, if her fighting when I was giving her her tablets is anything to go by.

She is now actually getting fat - likely as a result of the side effects of the pred, which encourages eating.  Will update again when we get her new results next week, but it's likely that the vet will drop her dose of Pred down to half a tablet a day. However, as we don't know the root cause of her autoimmune problems, she'll likely always have to take it.

She's also off all of the other meds she was on other than the Famatodine (which the emergency vet recommended to protect her from stomach problems as a result of the side effects of other medications).
 
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sarah super

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So after rallying for three months or so, we got the sad news today that Hank's RBC count has now fallen back to 9%. This is while she's been on the immuno suppressant medication. It's really sad news, and it looks now like it's just going to be a matter of time before we have to say goodbye to our little girl. I can take some solace from the fact that as we adopted her as a feral kitten, she's had a much better quality of life in the two or so short years that she was with us, than she ever would have had on the mean streets of Windsor.

Our vet has suggested taking her to a specialist and doing a bone marrow biopsy, but given the excessive cost, especially considering the rareness of her illness, and the fact that we're unwilling to do this given that we wouldn't want to subject her to chemotherapy, I guess it's just a case of trying to make sure that the rest of the time she's with us she's as comfortable as possible :(.
 

siold

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[if gte mso 9]><xml> <w:WordDocument> <w:View>Normal</w:View> <w:Zoom>0</w:Zoom> <w:DoNotOptimizeForBrowser/> </w:WordDocument></xml><![endif]I recommend putting her on Hill’s A/D.

5% is insane!

You need to find out what is causing her anemia.

Has her JCT been tested?

I think she might have hearthstone.

My vet always runs JCT every time he does a blood draw.

She needs injections of B12.

I wish I could post a great link to FA, but for some reason I’m not allowed to post links.

I’m glad she is feeling better.

That is wonderful.

This thread is invaluable to people who have cats that suffer from FA.

Henrietta once ran an 8 on her BL.

I recommend syringe feeding.

Please keep us updated.

I would really appreciate it.
 
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sarah super

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She was at 9% when she was tested on Friday.

She's being given vitamin B injections, and we also give her a Vit B supplement (liquid) twice a day, that was also prescribed by the vet.

Not sure what hearthstone is or what JCT is a measure of. The vet typically does a full blood analysis each time she has her blood tested.

She seems a little pinker today than she did on Friday. I've been keeping up with all of her medications. I'm trying to get hold of the vet to see what her visiting a specialist will entail. We're not willing to have a bone marrow biopsy done, as it seems more than a little invasive given how sick she is and how her anemia is supposed to be regenerative - which suggests that the bone marrow is still working and its her immune system that has the problems.

She's tested negative for both FIA and FIV, so those aren't the problem either....
 
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sarah super

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So Hank, the battler that she is is still with us, and responding well under atopica.

We're probably going to take her for an appointment with a specialist, although we are both unwilling to have a bone marrow biopsy. All the signs are that she is producing red blood cells, it's just that her body is destroying them...
 

cards222002

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that's good to hear we just switched to a injectable steroid depo medrol with our cat Trust and withing three Weeks he has jumped from a 15.7 to 38.5 on his RBC this was recommended by another person on this page. I don't know if it will hold for him as he has at test in the last 6 months jumped from 14 to 30 then back down but the 38.5 is the highest he has been since he got sick.
 

denice

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This is really good news.  I know there have been a lot of ups and downs but this sounds like this is the best that he has been since this started.  LDG has had both a lot of experience and has done a lot of research, she is a great source for a lot of good info.
 

ldg

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Yes, I'm the one that mentioned to Cards222002 that the switch to depo was what saved Tuxedo's life. It is what our vet found to be recommended by every feline blood specialist he spoke to - despite the fact that prednisolone is discussed in the literature as the front-line treatment. :dk:

sarah super sarah super , if depo hasn't been tried, I would ask your vet about this.

:vibes: :vibes: :vibes: :vibes: :vibes:
 
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sarah super

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So Hank is still with us, and appears to be doing well right now. We haven't taken her to see the specialist, because apparently the appointment will cost approx $2000. Given that it's clear Hanks anemia is regenerative, I don't really see what the benefit of a bone biopsy is. It appears to us, given that she's pulled back from very low RBC's that production of red blood cells is not her problem.

In other news, she had a slight cold last week, and appears to be having more side effects on Pred. Her ears started to curl a couple of weeks ago, so, given that it appeared from our last visit that pred is not working, we've been tapering her off it for the last couple of weeks, and if anything she seems much better without being on it.

We've also discovered that she was spitting out the bulk of the Atopica, so have been very careful to make sure that she swallows all of it, which looks like its causing the improvement in her RBC's. Thanks Cards for the suggestion about the depomendrol. I'll ask the vet about this the next time we take her in for a blood test, probably when she runs low on Atopica in about a month or so.
 

cards222002

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The depo really has made a difference in Trust he's been about 30 mainly at 38 for the past 14 weeks. I'd really look into it and at least try it
 
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sarah super

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So haven't posted about Hank for a while. The good news is that amazingly she is still with us. Last April when I did my last update, she got severe side effects - as indicated in my last post. The curling ears are a symptom of cushings and liver failure. At her worst point, she was orange.

The vet took her off all medication, and everyone thought that she would not pull through. But she did and eventually we had to put her back on medication.

Last October, she got really weak again, with an RBC of around 10%. Again she rallied, and I'm happy to say that since then she's being doing very well. We haven't had her blood tested for a while, but she is very pink and at the moment active to the point that she is playing with toys and play fighting with both of our two other cats.

She has also doubled her body weight, and at the moment is about 5kg, the highest weight she has been for the last couple of years since she started to get sick.

At her last check up, the vet told us that he thought she wouldn't survive longer than a month, so we've been very, very lucky to have as much time with her as we have. And while we know that her health might take a turn for the worse at any time, I think we're more confident now than we ever have been. Its clear that she's not beaten whatever syndrome she has, but that at the moment she's thriving. Fingers crossed that she stays that way for a while.
 

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Thanks so much for the update!  Sometimes when we don't hear from someone for a long time (it's been a year!) we hesitate to ask because it might be bad news, so I'm really glad you came back to let us know that Hank is still with us.  A thread like this provides great value to other people who are going through something similar.  Even in tough cases, they can see that there is hope and even the most hopeless cases sometimes end up OK.  You can only take it one day at a time, but in your case, it's been 365 days -- hope Hank continues to thrive.  Keep us posted.
 
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sarah super

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She's still battling!

It's amazing reading this thread that's now 2 1/2 years old, and knowing more about regenerative anemia in cats than I ever thought I would. This Summer, the vet took her off Atopica, and she crashed fairly quickly back to an RBC of 8%. We got her put back on it, and within 10 days we saw a significant improvement. Her blood is a very healthy 35% at the moment, and there are plans to drop her pred prescription to half a tablet a day in a week's time.

From monitoring, it appears that the combination of Pred and Atopica is what is making the difference and keeping her going. Her blood work indicates some mild liver problems, which are not unexpected side effects of her medication, but the levels are not so high that she needs additional medication to protect her liver.

We're currently giving her half the daily expected dose of atopica, which plus the pred seems to be enough to keep her stable. We think that her extra weight made the recovery in August much quicker, as cats with Anemia can shed pounds really quickly struggling to maintain red blood cell counts.

As I've always said, it's great to have her still with us, but every day is still a bonus. I don't think I expected her to be still here, 2 and a half years after she first got sick and needed an emergency transfusion.
 
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sarah super

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Hank finally passed away last Sunday. After 2 years on medication and in pretty good health, she went downhill rapidly and passed away within 12 hours of becoming a concern to us. She had a great quality of life up to the end, and we just want you to know that even a severe illness may not be an immediate death sentence, and also if your Vet is not aware that Atopica can be used off label as an immuno-suppressant. RIP Hankie, we miss you very much
 

heatheradair1

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So sorry to see this last update but I just found this thread through researching a likely similar condition in my neighbor's cat. Could you share the therapeutic dose of Atopica? I think you said Hankie was about 5kg?
 
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