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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 21196
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats and am happy to discuss any questions you have.
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Good evening...please can you help? Our 7 year old Abyssinian

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Good evening...please can you help? Our 7 year old Abyssinian was given a Convenia injection for a possible upper respiratory infection on Monday. She is on a Renal diet because of difficulties she sometimes has with her kidneys. Her cough/breathing improved slowly over a few days and then her health deteriorated suddenly over about 24 hours and she died this morning of kidney failure...although our vet made every effort to flush out her kidneys and stabilise her...she did not respond. Is it possible that this antibiotic injection was responsible for this do you think? Thank you for your help - Wendy
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 3 years ago.

Good evening Wendy,

I am very sorry to hear about Lula's deterioration and passing.
Now I truly do not think that her deterioration is as easily determinable as you what you are asking. The reason is because Lula had a chronic issue with her kidneys (which obviously I cannot appreciate the type or severity having not seen her bloods nor knowing her history), so already from the start we know this isn't a simple situation and instead her passing was more likely to be multi-factorial.

Now if we consider the antibiotic, Convenia is a cephalosporin antibiotic (which is an antibiotic type we use very commonly) and is on that is only partially excreted via the kidney. That said, if she already had severe kidney compromise, then any drug that has kidney based excretion could stress the kidney and damage it further. So, if her kidneys were already severely damaged, then this wouldn't have been an ideal treatment (nor would any drug that is excreted by the kidney) and could have played a partial role in her kidney failure (only a partial one though since she would need to already have severe kidney disease first to be in a position of vulnerability to be so affected by such a drug).

That said, in the case of Convenia, when we refer to the drug companies research we find very little evidence of the drug negatively impacting the kidney. There was a report of one cat (on a low dose study) in all their study cats having a notable change to her kidney values after being treated with this drug. And even when the studies went on to giving high doses (22.5X the normal dose Lula would have received), there was no report of kidney damage or failure. Therefore, while any kidney excreted drug could have pushed precariously severe kidney disease over the edge, it is unlikely that this one specific injection was purely to blame for her sudden deterioration.

So, in this case, it is doubtful that the Convenia caused kidney failure on its own. If she was already suffering with severe kidney dysfunction, then this could have pushed her over the edge but otherwise we'd have to consider other causes or her playing down her kidney disease as kitties so often do when they are unwell.

Please take care,
Dr. B.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.
Thank you very much for your prompt answer. I was worried that decisions I'd made earlier in the week may have contributed to her deterioration and death. Relieved to hear that giving the antibiotics in injection form probably weren't the cause...thank you.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 3 years ago.
You are very welcome, Wendy.

I am glad I could help you shed some light on the situation. I do not think anything you did in the past week while treating her upper respiratory tract infection would have done any harm. Instead, I suspect that this was lurking asymptomatically for some time and the compromise of her other organs probably stressed her body to a point where she could not manage her kidney struggles and everything else.

Please take care & please take comfort knowing you did her no harm and your proactive treatments ensured that she didn't suffer,
Dr. B.
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