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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 18168
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Hi my cat is 15 years old her body is jumping with what looks

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Hi my cat is 15 years old her body is jumping with what looks like an irregular heart beat and the is sounds coming from her also it looks like her heart may be racing but she is in good form even though this is happening , she has become very thin also on the bottom half of her body from her tail is stiff and her hip areas have become very narrow, could you advise pls thank you appreciate it kathleen
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am sorry to hear that Gypsy has such a high, irregular, heart rate. I am concerned that she may have hyperthyroidism. This is a tumor of the thyroid gland that overproduces thyroid hormones such that their metabolism, and heart rate increase significantly.

Hyperthyroid cats initially feel great due to the effects of the excess hormone. They eat well, their coats and skin cells turn over more quickly so they look great, and they have lots of energy. But the effects of high thyroid hormones eventually they take their toll on their body.

Cats with untreated hyperthyroidism can develop a type of heart disease called hypertrophic cardiomyopathy due to the effects of thyroid hormones on the heart. These hormones stimulate the heart to beat more forcefully and faster, sometimes in an irregular fashion, which eventually leads to thickening of the heart muscle to meet the demands. Eventually they almost always develop hypertension and secondary heart failure. This can lead to pleural effusion (fluid around the lungs) and pulmonary edema (fluid in the lungs).
They also cannot possibly eat enough to keep up with their increased metabolic rate and they will start to burn fat and eventually muscle to keep up with energy demands, thus her very thin body condition. With muscle loss they have a difficult time moving.
She is constantly hungry, because her metabolic rate is so high, thus her constant begging for food.

This is not something that can be diagnosed or treated at home. She needs a good physical examination, a complete blood count, biochemistry profile and thyroid level measured, and possibly chest radiographs to help diagnose her condition and give you an idea of what can be done to help her.

Treatment can be a daily medication to control her hormone levels (methimazole), a special diet to keep her levels down (Hills y/d diet), or radiation therapy to selectively kill her tumor cells.

In the meantime keep her very quiet and confined, stress can be deadly in her condition.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Dr. Kara and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I understand all you have supplied me with have just gone through it myself exactly the same details you have given me for her I have had also...... thank you so much I will get her seeing too tomorrow.....

I'm sorry I missed your reply earlier.
I am sorry to hear that you yourself went through hyperthyroid disease. It can be very unsettling for people I hear, hopefully your disease is under control now.
Best of luck with your girl, please let me know how things go for her, thank you, Dr. Kara.