Treatment Options and Advice

Discussion in 'Acromegaly / IAA / Cushings Cats' started by Dustin, May 30, 2018.

  1. Dustin

    Dustin New Member

    May 30, 2018
    So let me start off by saying how happy I am to have found this community for people that are having similar issues!

    I have a sweet male cat named Dirk that I adopted about 5 years ago, and he's probably around 11-12 years old and was just diagnosed with acromegaly (and the fun diabetes that goes with it) back in December-ish, which wiped out most of my savings just to get to that point. We live in Alaska, which has neither surgery nor radiation options anywhere in the state for treatment, and even if there were, I'm being quoted some absolutely insane treatment prices elsewhere in the US, up to almost $10k not even counting travel costs.

    Since I'm not independently wealthy, does anyone have any advice on treatment options and/or how to afford them? Obviously pet insurance is out the window, since nobody is going to insure him with a pre-existing condition like this!

    Honestly, any advice is appreciated. He is the sweetest cat and doesn't have a mean bone in his body, and I've gotta figure out some way to treat him!
  2. Chubba (GA)

    Chubba (GA) Well-Known Member

    Apr 30, 2017
    Cabergoline is an less expensive option that some of us have tried. It is an experimental drug that had helped some kitties. My Gizmo went off of insulin using it. Although cancer was found several weeks later, so I will always wonder. But I do believe the cabergoline helped him. There is one other kitty on the forum who is currently in remission due to cabergoline. It doesn’t work for all kitties, but might be worth looking into since it doesn’t sound like you have many other options.
  3. Dustin

    Dustin New Member

    May 30, 2018
    Thank you, I will definitely look into that!
    Ana & Frosty and Chubba (GA) like this.
  4. Wendy&Neko

    Wendy&Neko Well-Known Member

    Feb 28, 2012
    Hello and welcome.

    One other slightly more expensive options is SRT or stereotactic radiation therapy at Washington State University. If you read the post called Pigs Fabulous Journey, you can read about Sarah's recent trip with her kitty Pig. I drove three days with my Neko from Vancouver to Fort Collins Colorado, back when prices there were cheaper.

    We have also heard that if cabergoline doesn't work, there may be some value in adding octeoride into the mix. Most of the kitties here at least have had their dose reduced on cabergoline, which is a good thing.

    Out of curiosity, which insulin are you using? There might be cheaper sourcing options for you from Canada.
  5. JeffJ

    JeffJ Well-Known Member

    Jul 7, 2016
    I also went to Fort Collins for the SRT treatment, for Leo. It is more expensive than Washington state. The treatment pretty much knocked back his insulin demand to the 4.0-5.0 unit range - so I consider that a successful cure.

    Some owners don't have the funds. They just increase the insulin as needed to keep blood glucose levels in check. That can also get expensive as some cats to to 40 or even 50 units/dose.

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