When to test for acromegaly?

Discussion in 'Acromegaly / IAA / Cushings Cats' started by Amanda and a Loudogg, May 4, 2018.

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  1. Amanda and a Loudogg

    Amanda and a Loudogg Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2017
    Hello everyone!
    I just took my buddy Lou to the vet on Wednesday regarding his unregulated diabetes. I was thinking it was time for an insulin change, and my vet's first suggestion shocked me. She wanted to test him for acromegaly since he has some physical characteristics. I am generally familiar with this condition from this forum, and I thought the general guidelines for testing was when the kitty got up to 5 units/twice a day. My buddy Lou is currently at 3.5 units, which I think is high, but not crazy. I decided to wait and ask for my husband and y'alls opinons. Would you just test now or would you wait to see if his dose continues to rise?

    Previous conversation regarding vet visit: http://www.felinediabetes.com/FDMB/threads/update-when-to-worry-lou-barely-eating-today.194977/

    Thanks in advance!
     
    Last edited: May 4, 2018
  2. Wendy&Neko

    Wendy&Neko Well-Known Member

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    Feb 28, 2012
    We typically suggest testing at 6 units, if kitty is on a low carb diet with no other issues, such as bad teeth. However, the study that showed one in four diabetics has acromegaly, found some as low a dose as one unit. I have seen some vet's recommend getting tested if six months past diagnosis and not regulated yet. I would also test for IAA (insulin auto antibodies). The blood for that test goes to the same place, Michigan State University, so little additional cost to you. The majority of cats do not have physical symptom on diagnosis.
     
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  3. JeffJ

    JeffJ Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 7, 2016
    Agree with Wendy. She had Neko (acro-cat). I still have Leo, who is an acro-cat.

    If it was me, I would wait until you see some increase in BG or some signs of Acro. Even if there is a positive for Acro, some people just give more insulin. Some Acro-cats never go very high for insulin demand.

    Leo's Acro is in check, because he had SRT (radiation). But he had physical signs before I got him tested:
    - high insulin demand (18.0 units/dose)
    - squared and enlongated jaw
    - bony forehead growth
    - clubbed feet
    - abnormally enlarged gut
    - additional breathing issues from tissue growth in throat

    However, just in case anyone was wondering....we still love him anyhow! Now 18 months after SRT, and doing pretty good for an Acro-kitteh with small cell lymphoma.
     

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  4. Amanda and a Loudogg

    Amanda and a Loudogg Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2017
    Thank you so much Wendy and Jeff! I figured it would be worth waiting, but I have to confess I found myself a bit shook up that she brought it up at all. I knew logically that an acro diagnosis is not the end of the world (I specifically thought of Leo's journey), but it still shook me and got my mind reeling at the vet's office. The vet's reasons were his big head (though he is a big cat all around), his protruding jaw (which wasn't something I've ever really noticed), and the unregulated diabetes. Sounded plausible, but not quite definite, especially after doing some more research and reading Leo's list of symptoms.

    Thanks again for your help with this! And PS - Thank you for the adorable pic Jeff! :cat:
     
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  5. Wendy&Neko

    Wendy&Neko Well-Known Member

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    Feb 28, 2012
    I wasn't suggesting waiting if you think there something behind it. If he is acro, and you plan to try it, the sooner the better. The test may provide peace of mind. Knowledge is power.
     
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  6. JL and Chip

    JL and Chip Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    I also think that knowledge is power and would test for acromegaly and IAA now. If he has acro, you can start considering your next steps and educate yourself on the disease and potential treatments. If not, then you don't have to wonder.

    We caught Tubby early, well before his insulin needs were significant and I'm SO glad we did. I wish more vets were as proactive as yours appears to be.
     
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  7. Amanda and a Loudogg

    Amanda and a Loudogg Well-Known Member

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    Jun 16, 2017
    I really appreciate all of your responses. I've been waffling back and forth and back and forth again since the vet visit (we're also changing insulins, so I think I've just been overwhelmed - only able to think about one thing at a time). I had been leaning towards testing, but I think your response finally cemented it JL. I'm going to call the vet today to see how much it will cost. Thanks everyone!
     
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  8. Ana & Frosty (GA)

    Ana & Frosty (GA) Member

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    Jan 19, 2018
    The vet is considering that Frosty might have it, even though he is only on 2.5 units twice a day right now.
     
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