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Feature October 2014 Issue

Diagnosis: Feline Acromegaly

Feline acromegaly is considered to be an uncommon disease, but many experts feel that it is probably underdiagnosed.

Diagnosis: Feline Acromegaly

This underdiagnosed glandular condition is caused by a pituitary tumor, leading to diabetes that can be difficult — or impossible — to control.

Chester is a 13-year-old diabetic orange tabby. When he first presented to my feline-only veterinary hospital five years ago, he had the classic signs of diabetes: excessive thirst, increased urination and weight loss despite an exceptionally good appetite. Making the diagnosis was easy. Chester’s blood sugar was greater than 400 mg/dl (normal is somewhere in the 80 to 150 range) and he had lots of sugar in his urine. Most diabetics are male, like him. Most are middle aged, like him. Most are overweight — also like him. In fact, it was a classic textbook case.

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