RADIOCAT I-131 TREATMENT

RADIOCAT

Iodine-131 Treatment for Feline Hyperthyroidism - A one shot deal!

Radiocat Feline Hyperthyroidism treatment Northern VA DC Metro

Dr. David S. Herring, DVM, DACVR
Dr. Rand S. Wachsstock, DVM  

What is Hyperthyroidism?
What other treatment options are available, and what are their risks?
What is Radioiodine I-131 treatment, and how does it work?
What can I expect during my cat's hospitalization?
What type of post-treatment care is involved?

What is Hyperthyroidism?

Like an engine, the butterfly-shaped thyroid gland regulates many aspects of the body's metabolic rate. Your hyperthyroid cat has a tumor (98% are benign) that is producing too much thyroid hormone, which in turn keeps the cat's "engine" running at an abnormally high speed. This condition over-stimulates virtually every organ system, and causes reactions including behavioral changes, weight loss, excessive or decreased appetite, hyperactivity or lethargy, fever, rapid heartbeat and/or arrhythmia, shedding, increased water consumption & litter box output, diarrhea and osteoporosis. While fatal if left untreated, we can now cure this disease, and return your cat to a normal thyroid state! It's a one shot deal. Radiocat has successfully treated over 30,000 patients.
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What other treatment options are available,
and what are their risks?

Anti-thyroid drugs (Tapazole):
•Do not cure the disease or kill the tumor causing the problem
•Side effects like nausea, vomiting, lethargy, lack of appetite, and hair loss/facial scabbing
•Loss of vital white blood cells & blood clotting abilities
•Long term damage to liver and kidneys
•Damage to owner-pet relationship due to difficulties in pilling your cat 1-3 times daily
•Increased need for blood tests to monitor thyroid hormone levels and potential side effects
•Cost of pills & blood tests is $500-$700 per year, for the rest of your cat's life
Surgery:
•Anesthesia
•Possible damage to/removal of parathyroid glands
•Difficulty in identifying/removing the entire tumor
•Persistence of hyperthyroidism post-surgery (80% will develop a tumor in the opposite side within one and a half years)
•Cost of one surgery is $700-$1300
•Often performed in two surgeries
•Thyroid tissue in the chest that can not be removed and where the tumor can recur
•Many cats still need I-131 therapy after undergoing one or more thyroidectomies
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What is Radioiodine I-131 treatment, and how does it work?

One injection of Radioiodine (I-131) is all it takes! The I-131 is absorbed into and destroys only the thyroid tumor -- wherever its location -- in roughly 98% of cats after just one injection. By law, this therapy requires a clinic stay of less than one week but does NOT require anesthesia. It also does not affect healthy thyroid tissue, the neighboring parathyroid glands or have any harmful side effects. Your cat's thyroid function should become normal within one month, and should not require thyroid supplementation. Our treatment plan includes an office examination, review of records, x-ray interpretation, I-131 injection; daily monitoring (with as much love and care as we can safely give); feeding and hospitalization. Following discharge, we will still be involved in your cat's health via discussions with you and a review of your cat's post treatment test results with your referring veterinarian.
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What can I expect during my cat's hospitalization?

Your cat must reach the safe and legal level of radiation release (less than a week) before coming home (often harder for the owner than the cat). We make every effort to make our feline guests as happy as possible. We limit their numbers to allow us to spend more time with each one. Our wards are large, airy, bright and comfortable. We can arrange to play special music or audiotapes of your voice for your cat, and we have a TV/VCR complete with a library of "Kitty Videos." Toys and blankets are welcome (but not returnable). We'll work with you in determining a menu of your cat's favorite dishes, and take great pride in caring for and loving your pet in your absence. Daily progress reports on your cat are available.
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What type of post-treatment care is involved?

After your cat is released, we ask that you take two weeks of some basic, common sense safety precautions primarily regarding your cat's litter box output (we'll give you detailed written instructions along with a litter disposal kit). You'd probably receive more radiation from an extended flight or a day at the beach than you'll get from your cat once it's released, so it does NOT need to be isolated from you, your family and other pets, but it must stay indoors. Limiting (NOT halting) snuggling with your cat, and washing your hands after prolonged close contact is recommended. We'll help you figure out ways to accommodate these small changes in your daily routine. The potential risk to owners is extremely remote as regulations for using I-131 are much stricter for animals than for people, but we recommend pregnant women not participate in the cat's care during these two weeks. After two weeks, simply return to your normal pet-care and pet-loving routine!
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Dr. David S. Herring, DVM, DACVR

Dr. David S. Herring is a board-certified Veterinary Radiologist who believes the pet's best interests are paramount and that the treatment should never be worse than the disease. He received advanced training in diagnostic ultrasound, echocardiography, radiography and nuclear medicine, and taught at Texas A&M and The Ohio State University. In 1985, he moved to the Baltimore-Washington area, where he became the first veterinarian to offer abdominal ultrasound and, in 1995, radioiodine therapy (I-131).
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Dr. Rand S. Wachsstock, DVM

Dr. Rand S. Wachsstock is a graduate of The University of Illinois. Dr. Wachsstock taught both there and at Yale University. He has actively practiced emergency medicine since 1984 and believes comprehensive state-of-the-art medical care should be readily available to all pets. He owns and operates The Emergency/Critical Care Service at The Regional Veterinary Referral Center in Springfield, Virginia. From 2005 - 2010 Dr. Wachsstock was appointed by the Governor of the Commonwealth of Virginia to the Radiation Advisory Board. Dr. Herring and Dr. Wachsstock are co-founders of Radiocat, a veterinary practice dedicated exclusively to the care and treatment of feline hyperthyroidism.

To learn more, please visit www.radiocat.com.
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