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How To Treat Ketoacidosis In Cats

Diabetic Ketoacidosis In The Cat: Recognition And Essential Treatment.

Diabetic Ketoacidosis In The Cat: Recognition And Essential Treatment.

Abstract Practical relevance: Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a not uncommon emergency in both newly diagnosed and poorly regulated diabetic cats. When there is a heightened metabolic rate and energy requirement due to concurrent illness, an increase in the release of glucose counter-regulatory hormones causes insulin receptor resistance, lipolysis, free fatty acid release and ketogenesis. This necessitates not only treatment to eliminate the ketosis and control blood glucose, but also investigation of concurrent illnesses. Clinical challenges: A number of metabolic derangements can occur with DKA, requiring a comprehensive diagnostic evaluation, elimination of ketones, careful correction of glucose, electrolyte and acid base abnormalities, and close monitoring. AUDIENCE: Any veterinarian that cares for cats in urgent and emergency situations should understand the pathophysiology of DKA in order to address an individual's clinical signs and metabolic derangements. Evidence base: This review draws evidence from the peer-reviewed literature as well as the author's personal clinical experience. Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (dka) In Cats

Diabetic Ketoacidosis (dka) In Cats

Feline Diabetic Ketoacidosis Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), the most severe form of Diabetes Mellitus, results in severe changes in blood chemicals including imbalances in small, simple chemicals known as electrolytes. Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a chronic condition in which a deficiency of the hormone insulin impairs the body’s ability to metabolize sugar. It is one of the most common endocrine (hormonal) diseases of cats. For more information on the basics of diabetes, go to Diabetes mellitus in cats DKA is a life-threatening condition caused by diabetes mellitus resulting from insulin deficiency that leads to excess production of ketoacids by the liver. Subsequent changes in the blood result that includes metabolic acidosis, electrolyte abnormalities producing severe signs of systemic illness. DKA condition can occur in pets with new diabetes or in current diabetics that decompensate. Secondary diseases and/or infections can cause diabetics to decompensate and develop DKA. What to Watch For Signs associated with DKA depend on the individual cat and the length of time they have been ill. Signs may consist of the classic signs of diabetes including: Increased thirst Increased frequency of urination Weight loss despite a good appetite Sudden blindness Additional signs of DKA include: Lethargy Vomiting Weakness Dehydration Some pets will have a strong smell of acetone from their breath Diagnosis of Diabetic Ketoacidosis in Cats Veterinary care should include diagnostic tests to determine level of blood sugar, the presence of ketones, and electrolyte concentrations to help guide subsequent treatment recommendations. Some of these tests include: Complete medical history and thorough physical examination. Serum biochemical profile to determine the blood glucose concentration Continue reading >>

2010 Aaha Diabetes Management Guidelines For Dogs And Cats

2010 Aaha Diabetes Management Guidelines For Dogs And Cats

Renee Rucinsky, DVM, ABVP (Feline) (Chair) | Audrey Cook, BVM&:S, MRCVS, Diplomate ACVIM-SAIM, Diplomate ECVIM-CA | Steve Haley, DVM | Richard Nelson, DVM, Diplomate ACVIM | Debra L. Zoran, DVM, PhD, Diplomate ACVIM | Melanie Poundstone, DVM, ABVP - Download PDF - Introduction Diabetes mellitus (DM) is a treatable condition that requires a committed effort by veterinarian and client. This document provides current recommendations for the treatment of diabetes in dogs and cats. Treatment of DM is a combination of art and science, due in part to the many factors that affect the diabetic state and the animal's response. Each animal needs individualized, frequent reassessment, and treatment may be modified based on response. In both dogs and cats, DM is caused by loss or dysfunction of pancreatic beta cells. In the dog, beta cell loss tends to be rapid and progressive, and it is usually due to immune-mediated destruction, vacuolar degeneration, or pancreatitis.1 Intact females may be transiently diabetic due to the insulin-resistant effects of the diestrus phase. In the cat, loss or dysfunction of beta cells is the result of insulin resistance, islet amyloidosis, or chronic lymphoplasmacytic pancreatitis.2 Risk factors for both dogs and cats include insulin resistance caused by obesity, other diseases (e.g., acromegaly in cats, hyperadrenocorticism in dogs), or medications (e.g., steroids, progestins). Genetics is a suspected risk factor, and certain breeds of dogs (Australian terriers, beagles, Samoyeds, keeshonden3) and cats (Burmese4) are more susceptible. Regardless of the underlying etiology, diabetic dogs and cats are hyperglycemic and glycosuric, which leads to the classic clinical signs of polyuria, polydipsia (PU/PD), polyphagia, and weight loss. Increased fat mobi Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Is A Dire Diagnosis

Diabetic Ketoacidosis Is A Dire Diagnosis

Michelle Gerhard Jasny, V.M.D. has been practicing veterinary medicine on the Vineyard since 1982 and writing the Visiting Vet column for more than 25 years. She lives and works in West Tisbury. She can be reached at [email protected] Yves had always been a cat who liked to eat. A seasonal resident, I saw him every summer. When he was four years old, I suggested reducing the amount he was being fed. At six, I advised a prescription weight loss diet. It was a difficult regimen for his owners to maintain. Yves lived strictly indoors and didn’t get much exercise, and the other cat in the household had different health problems, requiring different food. By 11 years old, Yves was tipping the scale at 21 pounds. “He’s at risk for all kinds of diseases, especially diabetes,” I said, not unsympathetically, considering how many years I have struggled with my own battle of the bulge. His family committed again to helping him lose weight and last winter we sent them off with more diet food, recommending monthly weigh-ins with their winter veterinarian. Spring arrived. Seasonal folks began returning. Memorial Day weekend, Yves’s mother called. “We’ve been here two weeks,” she said. Yves had been fine until yesterday. “I am worried he might have some kind of blockage. He’s been vomiting and crying and he’s not eating.” “He’s still an indoor cat?” I asked. Cats who go out have greater risk of ingesting things that may upset their tummies, anything from mice to antifreeze, but Yves never ventured to the great outdoors. “Any flowers like lilies in the house?” I asked. Ingestion of houseplants is a common cause of gastroenteritis for indoor cats and lilies in particular are extremely toxic to cats, leading to potentially fatal kidney failure. “No, Continue reading >>

Management Of Feline Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Management Of Feline Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a complication of diabetes mellitus with concurrent and often severe metabolic derangements associated with hyperglycaemia, glucosuria, metabolic acidosis, ketonaemia +/- ketonuria. Patients with ketonaemia/ketosis are usually still bright, eating and maintaining their hydration. Those with ketoacidosis are dehydrated, clinically unwell (e.g., anorexia, vomiting, lethargy) and typically require hospitalisation and intensive management. DKA is distinguished from uncomplicated diabetes mellitus (DM) by a relative insulin lack and increased counter-regulatory hormones. The latter are thought to occur secondary to intercurrent disease. Concurrent disease has been documented in approximately 90% of cats with DKA, with the most common being hepatic lipidosis, chronic kidney disease, acute pancreatitis, bacterial or viral infections and neoplasia (Bruskiewicz et al. 1997). Heinz bodies, neutrophilia with a left shift, increased ALT and azotaemia is common. Most cats presenting with DKA are newly diagnosed diabetics or recently diagnosed but poorly controlled diabetics. Diagnosis Hyperglycaemia, Glucosuria, Metabolic Acidosis Plus Ketones in Plasma and/or Urine Traditionally DKA has been diagnosed using urinary ketone dipsticks, which detect acetoacetate but not beta-hydroxybutyrate. However as the latter is the principle ketone body in DKA, measuring serum beta-hydroxybutyrate is a more sensitive indicator of DKA. In humans portable meters that measure beta-hydroxybutyrate in whole blood have largely superseded urine dipsticks. These ketone meters have recently proven useful in diagnosing DKA in cats, although they tend to underestimate beta-hydroxybutyrate at higher values (Zeugswetter, Rebuzzi 2012; Weingart et al. 2012). In the absence of a ke Continue reading >>

Ketoacidosis

Ketoacidosis

Ketones in the urine, as detected by urine testing stix or a blood ketone testing meter[1], may indicate the beginning of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA), a dangerous and often quickly fatal condition caused by low insulin levels combined with certain other systemic stresses. DKA can be fixed if caught quickly. Diabetics of all species therefore need to be checked for ketones with urine testing stix, available at any pharmacy, whenever insulin level may be too low, and any of the following signs or triggers are present: Ketone Monitoring Needed: Little or no insulin in last 12 hours High blood sugar over 16 mmol/L or 300 mg/dL (though with low insulin, lower as well...) Dehydration (skin doesn't jump back after pulling a bit gums are tacky or dry)[2] Not eating for over 12 hours due to Inappetance or Fasting Vomiting Lethargy Infection or illness High stress levels Breath smells like acetone (nail-polish remover) or fruit. Note that the triggers and signs are somewhat interchangeable because ketoacidosis is, once begun, a set of vicious circles which will make itself worse. So dehydration, hyperglycemia, fasting, and presence of ketones are not only signs, they're also sometimes triggers. In a diabetic, any urinary ketones above trace, or any increase in urinary ketone level, or trace urinary ketones plus some of the symptoms above, are cause to call an emergency vet immediately, at any hour of the day. Possible False Urine Ketone Test Results Drugs and Supplements Valproic Acid (brand names) Depakene, Depakote, Divalproex Sodium[3] Positive. Common use: Treatment of epilepsy. Cefixime/Suprax[4] Positive with nitroprusside-based urine testing. Common use: Antibiotic. Levadopa Metabolites[5] Positive with high concentrations[6]. Tricyclic Ring Compounds[7][8] Positive. Commo Continue reading >>

Using Glargine For Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Using Glargine For Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Using glargine intravenously for diabetic ketoacidosis Diabetic ketoacidosis results from prolonged inadequate insulin activity. The main aims of therapy are to supply exogenous insulin, restore hydration status and manage electrolyte disturbances. Ketoacidotic cats usually present severely dehydrated and as such, have reduced absorption from subcutaneous tissue (from reduced blood flow). Until hydration is restored, insulin must be administered either intravenously or intramuscularly. For many years, the insulin of choice for treating ketoacidosis has been regular insulin due to its rapid onset, potent glucose lowering effect and predictably short duration of action. Glargine has almost identical properties to that of regular insulin when used intravenously (Scholtz et al, 2003). Its actions are so similar that glargine can simply be substituted for regular insulin (for all your current protocols just draw glargine up instead of regular insulin). There are no reported clinical trials in the human literature assessing glargine administered intravenously as it was accepted to have no benefit over regular insulin. Regular insulin is used solely to treat diabetic ketoacidosis and many veterinary clinics chose not to stock it (or use it well after the expiry date) as the disease is seen so infrequently and most of the vials are wasted. Glargine on the other hand, can be used in DKA as well as maintenance therapy and most clinics have it on hand for diabetic cats. We mix glargine with normal saline, hartmann’s or 2.5% glucose solution. It is uncertain how long it will stay active in these solutions so suggest a new solution is made every 24hrs. Glargine can be administered to ketoacidotic cats by: infusing intravenously at a rate of 0.05-0.1 U/kg/hr and rate adjusted to ma Continue reading >>

Feline Chronic Kidney Disease

Feline Chronic Kidney Disease

ON THIS PAGE: Risk Factors Home > Related Diseases > Diabetes It is not uncommon for a CKD cat to also have or develop diabetes. The dietary needs of a diabetic cat may seem incompatible with the needs of a CKD cat but the diabetes must take precedence. What is Diabetes Mellitus? Insulin is a hormone which enables the body to process food and to produce energy from it. Diabetes mellitus is a disease in which: not enough insulin is produced by the pancreas; or the cat’s body cells do not properly process insulin which the pancreas has produced. As a result, the cat develops high blood sugar levels (hyperglycaemia), which eventually lead to high sugar levels in the urine (glucosuria). Diabetes may present as: uncomplicated; or diabetes with ketoacidosis (DKA) Cats with the former may only have mild symptoms, at least in the early stages, but cats with ketoacidosis are usually very ill, and may die if not treated promptly. There is another, much rarer form of diabetes called diabetes insipidus which is beyond the scope of this website. Cornell University College of Veterinary Medicine has a good general overview of diabetes in cats. Feline diabetes mellitus: from diagnosis to therapy (2009) is a helpful article by Dr DL Zoran. Feline Diabetes provides detailed answers to frequently asked questions. Risk Factors Increasing age is a factor (as it is for CKD cats). Steroid-induced diabetes in cats (2013) Peterson ME Veterinary Endocrinology says "The average age at diagnosis for feline diabetes is 10 years, with a peak incidence between 9 and 13 years." Obesity in cats, as in humans, is a strong predisposing factor for diabetes. For some reason, male cats and neutered cats are more at risk of diabetes. Burmese cats in the UK and Australasia (but not the USA) appear to be mo Continue reading >>

Feline Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Feline Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Fall 2008 Ketoacidosis is a metabolic imbalance that is most commonly seen as a sequel to unmanaged or poorly regulated diabetes mellitus. It is caused by the breakdown of fat and protein in a compensatory effort for the need of more metabolic energy. The excessive breakdown of these stored reserves creates a toxic by-product in the form of ketones. As ketones build up in the blood stream, pH and electrolyte imbalances proceed. This condition is a potentially life-threatening emergency that requires immediate medical attention. Diabetes mellitus is a common endocrine disease in geriatric felines. It is caused by a dysfunction in the beta cells of the exocrine pancreas resulting in an absolute or relative deficiency of insulin. Insulin has been called the cells' gatekeeper. It attaches to the surface of cells and permits glucose, the cells' primary energy source, to enter from the blood. A lack of insulin results in a build up of glucose in the blood, physiologically causing a state of cellular starvation. In response to this condition the body begins to increase the mobilization of protein and fat storage. Fatty acids are released from adipose tissue, which are then oxidized by the liver. Normally, these fatty acids are formed into triglycerides. However, without insulin, these fatty acids are converted into ketone bodies, which cannot be utilized by the body. Together with the increased production and decreased utilization an abnormally high concentration of ketone bodies develop. These fixed acids are buffered by bicarbonate; however, the excessive amounts overwhelm and deplete the bicarbonate leading to an increase in arterial hydrogen ion concentration and a decrease in serum bicarbonate. This increase in hydrogen ions lowers the body's pH, leading to a metabolic ac Continue reading >>

Feline Diabetes Mellitus

Feline Diabetes Mellitus

4 0 Diabetes Mellitus is a metabolic disease caused by a failure of the pancreas to produce enough insulin. Insulin allows cells in the body to absorb glucose (sugar) from the blood. Glucose is the cells’ main energy source and is critical to cellular function. Without insulin, the cells do not get the energy they need to function, and glucose levels in the blood rise. The body can use fats as an energy source; however this can occasionally lead to a life threatening condition called diabetic ketoacidosis which requires emergency treatment. Symptoms of diabetes include the following: 1. Weight loss – as fats are mobilized for energy instead of glucose 2. Increased appetite – as the body tries to increase its energy supplies 3. Increased drinking and urination – the glucose in the blood overwhelms the kidneys and spills into the urine drawing excessive amounts of water with it 4. Untreated diabetics can develop diabetic ketoacidosis. If this happens, the cat will show signs of severe illness including loss of appetite, lethargy and vomiting. Diagnosing diabetes is generally straightforward. Most diabetic patients have significantly elevated glucose levels in their blood as well as in their urine. In many cats we recommend a fructosamine test to confirm the diagnosis and make sure the elevated glucose was not due to stress. Most diabetic cats do very well with treatment and can live for many years with the disease. In addition to treating the diabetes, it is important to closely monitor all aspects of your cat’s health, since diabetes can make cats more susceptible to other problems such as infections. Dental health is especially important! Treating diabetes involves several steps: 1. Diet – Recent studies have shown that decreasing the intake of carbohydrates Continue reading >>

Diagnose & Treat Feline Diabetes Mellitus

Diagnose & Treat Feline Diabetes Mellitus

Profile Diabetes mellitus (DM), classified as type I or type II, is a treatable condition caused by complete or relative insulin deficiency. Most diabetic cats have type II, characterized by β-cell dysfunction and peripheral insulin resistance. Type I diabetes, uncommon in cats, results from immunologic destruction of β cells, leading to complete insulin insufficiency. Reversion to noninsulin-dependent diabetic mellitus (NIDDM) state is more likely with type II diabetes, as some causes of peripheral insulin resistance are reversible and islet cell dysfunction is variable in these cases. Systems In uncomplicated DM, urinary and immune systems are most commonly affected. Long-standing, uncontrolled DM can lead to complications (eg, polyneuropathy, hepatic disease [hepatic lipidosis], bacterial infections). Prevalence Up to 1% of cats in the United States and Australia are affected. Burmese cats are overrepresented in Australia, New Zealand, and the UK.1,2 Most cats are diagnosed ≥7 years of age.3,4 Males are more frequently affected.4 Multiple causes of peripheral insulin resistance have been identified (see Causes of Insulin Resistance in Cats): Obesity. Concurrent disease. Diet. Drugs. Direct β-cell loss can be secondary to chronic amyloid deposition or pancreatitis but does not cause DM; instead, conditions that lead to β-cell loss may increase susceptibility to DM when faced with peripheral insulin resistance. Causes of Insulin Resistance in Cats Obesity Chronic pancreatitis Bacterial infection Kidney disease Hyperthyroidism Heart disease Neoplasia Hyperadrenocorticism Acromegaly Glucocorticoid or progestogen administration Risk factors for DM include obesity, male gender, advanced age, and renal transplantation.3-5 Insulin deficiency results in hyperglycemia by Continue reading >>

The Signs, Diagnosis & Types Of Diabetes Mellitus In Cats

The Signs, Diagnosis & Types Of Diabetes Mellitus In Cats

There are certain signs or symptoms which are commonly seen in cats with diabetes mellitus. Unfortunately, these signs also occur in other diseases and conditions. Therefore, laboratory tests are necessary to diagnose diabetes mellitus in cats. The following article includes a discussion of how this diagnosis is made and the types of diabetes found in cats. What are the signs of diabetes mellitus in cats and why do they occur? Depending on how severely insulin production is impaired, there may be few signs of disease, or the signs may be severe. Dogs with diabetes often develop cataracts; cats do not. The most common signs of diabetes are: Increased thirst (polydipsia) and urination (polyuria) Change in appetite Weight loss Change in gait (walking) Decreased activity, weakness, depression Vomiting Increased Thirst and Urination: Because the glucose cannot enter the cells, the glucose levels in the blood become abnormally high (hyperglycemia). The glucose is filtered out by the kidneys and is found in the urine (glucosuria). When it is filtered out, it carries water with it. The animal, then, is losing more water through the urine than normal and has to make up for it by drinking more. Inappropriate Elimination: The increased urination may result in the cat not always urinating in the litter box. This inappropriate urination may be one of the first signs of diabetes in cats. In addition, cats with diabetes can often develop urinary tract infections, which may also result in inappropriate elimination. Change in Appetite: Some diabetic cats eat less, because frankly, they do not feel well. Other cats may have voracious appetites and eat a lot (polyphagia) because their hypothalamus keeps telling them they are hungry. Weight Loss: Because the cat cannot use the calories he Continue reading >>

My Cat Has Diabetes :: Treatment

My Cat Has Diabetes :: Treatment

Living with a diabetic cat Each diabetic cat responds differently to different therapies. Some cats are easier to regulate; others require more complex types of treatment. Some cats can be treated successfully through changes in diet and with oral medications. In cats with more severe diabetes, insulin injections may be required for the remainder of their lives. In general, treatment for diabetes falls into three categories: Insulin injections Oral hypoglycemic medications Diet Home monitoring & testing Ongoing and frequent home monitoring of your cat's glucose level is important both for ensuring that diabetes is under control and the long-term health maintenance of your pet. Home monitoring usually results in less stress on the cat and allows for closer, more precise control of blood glucose levels on a regular basis, which helps avoid the risk of hypoglycemic episodes. Home testing of glucose levels can be done with a similar type of blood glucose monitor used by humans. This method requires a small sample of blood that is taken from the cat for testing and generally provides an immediate reading of your cat's blood glucose level. In addition to monitoring glucose levels through the blood, caretakers can use urine glucose monitoring. However, urine glucose monitoring is generally not as accurate due to the lag time for glucose to go from the blood to the urine in the cat's body. It is recommended to consult with your veterinarian on the best way to monitor your cat's glucose. They can also provide valuable advice on which type(s) of monitors work best in cats, as well as train you on how to use and interpret the test results. When at home, you also should continually be aware of your cat's appetite, water consumption and urine output to determine what is normal behav Continue reading >>

Feline Diabetes

Feline Diabetes

Insulin injections are the preferred method of managing diabetes in cats. Figure 1: To administer an injection, pull the loose skin between the shoulder blades with one hand. With the other hand, insert the needle directly into the indentation made by holding up the skin, draw back on the plunger slightly, and if no blood appears in the syringe, inject gently. Tips for Treatment 1. You can do it! Treating your cat may sound difficult, but for most owners it soon becomes routine. 2. Work very closely with your veterinarian to get the best results for your cat. 3. Once your cat has been diagnosed, it's best to start insulin therapy as soon as possible. 4. Home glucose monitoring can be very helpful. 5. Tracking your cat's water intake, activity level, appetite, and weight can be beneficial. 6. A low carbohydrate diet helps diabetic cats maintain proper glucose levels. 7. With careful treatment, your cat's diabetes may well go into remission. 8. If your cat shows signs of hypoglycemia (lethargy, weakness, tremors, seizures, vomiting) apply honey, a glucose solution, or dextrose gel to the gums and immediately contact a veterinarian. Possible Complications Insulin therapy lowers blood glucose, possibly to dangerously low levels. Signs of hypoglycemia include weakness, lethargy, vomiting, lack of coordination, seizures, and coma. Hypoglycemia can be fatal if left untreated, so any diabetic cat that shows any of these signs should be offered its regular food immediately. If the cat does not eat voluntarily, it should be given oral glucose in the form of honey, corn syrup, or proprietary dextrose gels (available at most pharmacies) and brought to a veterinarian immediately. It is important, however, that owners not attempt to force fingers, food, or fluids into the mouth of a Continue reading >>

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic Ketoacidosis

Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a serious complication of diabetes mellitus. Before the availability of insulin in the 1920s, DKA was a uniformly fatal disorder. Even after the discovery of insulin, DKA continued to carry a grave prognosis with a reported mortality rate in humans ranging from 10% to 30%. However, with the expanding knowledge regarding the pathophysiology of DKA and the application of new treatment techniques for the complications of DKA, the mortality rate for this disorder has decreased to less than 5% in experienced human medical centers (Kitabchi et al, 2008). We have experienced a similar decrease in the mortality rate for DKA in our hospital over the past two decades. DKA remains a challenging disorder to treat, in part because of the deleterious impact of DKA on multiple organ systems and the frequent occurrence of concurrent often serious disorders that are responsible for the high mortality rate of DKA. In humans, the incidence of DKA has not decreased, appropriate therapy remains controversial, and patients continue to succumb to this complication of diabetes mellitus. This chapter summarizes current concepts regarding the pathophysiology and management of DKA in dogs and cats. • Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) is a severe form of complicated diabetes mellitus that requires emergency care. • Acidosis and electrolyte abnormalities can be life threatening. • Fluid therapy and correction of electrolyte abnormalities are the two most important components of therapy. • Concurrent disease increases the risk for DKA and must be addressed as part of the diagnostic and therapeutic plan. • Bicarbonate therapy usually is not needed and its use is controversial. • About 70% of treated dogs and cats are discharged from the hospital after 5 to 6 days Continue reading >>

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