Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Treating epilepsy in cats

Date:
September 2, 2011
Source:
Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien
Summary:
Cats are known to have types of epileptic seizures in which consciousness is usually impaired although not all of the body is affected. Researchers in Austria now show that cats that suffer in this way have changes in the hippocampus, the part of the brain most commonly affected in human epilepsy.

Cats are known to have types of epileptic seizures in which consciousness is usually impaired although not all of the body is affected. New research by Akos Pakozdy and colleagues at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna shows that cats that suffer in this way have changes in the hippocampus, the part of the brain most commonly affected in human epilepsy.

Related Articles


Although cats with such epileptic seizures may not respond immediately to treatment, they sometimes do so within a few days and if treatment continues they may once again show normal behaviour. The findings are published in the current issue of the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery.

Many cat owners are not sure how to react when their animals start behaving abnormally. The diagnosis of epilepsy and similar conditions is particularly difficult because the symptoms are so variable. In some cases the first sign has been described as "looking into space" -- which is generally considered to be how most cats spend the majority of their time anyway. But when it is followed by twitching of facial muscles, chewing and swallowing and excessive salivation even the most unaware owners are probably tempted to consult a vet.

Akos Pakozdy and colleagues at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna now report an investigation into a total of 17 cats that were presented to the Clinic for Internal Medicine and Infectious Diseases with specific epileptic symptoms. The condition of nine of them was unfortunately so severe that nothing more could be done. In the other cases, the researchers noticed that treatment seemed ineffectual for the first 4-11 days, which made many owners fear that their animals would never recover. But when treatment was continued beyond this period a good number of the cats responded well and in four cases the animals survived even longer than it took the scientists to prepare their results for publication.

All the affected cats were found to have changes in the hippocampus and related structures, the part of the brain most commonly affected in human epilepsy. Importantly, no structural problems could be found in other areas of the brain. The changes in the hippocampus appeared similar to those observed in a special type of human epilepsy (MTLE-HS), although the researchers report some differences.

There are several indications that the seizures directly lead to hippocampal damage. Although the evidence is not clear-cut, it is clearly preferable to treat the condition as soon as possible to minimize damage. Pakozdy notes that some cats may be particularly susceptible to hippocampal damage and thus not respond to treatment but in other cases "if the cat is treated early it may not develop severe lesions with refractory seizures and the final outcome will be better."

The new work at the University of Veterinary Medicine, Vienna suggests that cats with hippocampal damage may have a better prognosis than indicated by previous studies and that the condition is not necessarily fatal. The owners of the surviving cats report that their pets enjoy a good quality of life, so it is clear that this type of epilepsy in cats can be treated effectively. Whether their owners will be happy to let them continue staring into space afterwards is of course another matter.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Akos Pakozdy, Andrea Gruber, Sibylle Kneissl, Michael Leschnik, Peter Halasz, Johann G. Thalhammer. Complex partial cluster seizures in cats with orofacial involvement. Journal of Feline Medicine & Surgery, 2011; DOI: 10.1016/j.jfms.2011.05.014

Cite This Page:

Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien. "Treating epilepsy in cats." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 2 September 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110902081654.htm>.
Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien. (2011, September 2). Treating epilepsy in cats. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110902081654.htm
Veterinärmedizinische Universität Wien. "Treating epilepsy in cats." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/09/110902081654.htm (accessed November 1, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Watch Baby Goose Survive A 400-Foot Cliff Dive

Watch Baby Goose Survive A 400-Foot Cliff Dive

Buzz60 (Oct. 31, 2014) — For its nature series Life Story, the BBC profiled the barnacle goose, whose chicks must make a daredevil 400-foot cliff dive from their nests to find food. Jen Markham has the astonishing video. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com
World's Salamanders At Risk From Flesh-Eating Fungus

World's Salamanders At Risk From Flesh-Eating Fungus

Newsy (Oct. 31, 2014) — The import of salamanders around the globe is thought to be contributing to the spread of a deadly fungus. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Alcoholic Drinks In The E.U. Could Get Calorie Labels

Alcoholic Drinks In The E.U. Could Get Calorie Labels

Newsy (Oct. 31, 2014) — A health group in the United Kingdom has called for mandatory calorie labels on alcoholic beverages in the European Union. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Malaria Threat in Liberia as Fight Against Ebola Rages

Malaria Threat in Liberia as Fight Against Ebola Rages

AFP (Oct. 31, 2014) — Focus on treating the Ebola epidemic in Liberia means that treatment for malaria, itself a killer, is hard to come by. MSF are now undertaking the mass distribution of antimalarials in Monrovia. Duration: 00:38 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins