My Cat Has a Collapsed Lung

ak0402May 15, 2007

I was just told that my 16-year-old cat has a collapsed lung. I had taken her in to the vet because she became suddenly lethargic. They did blood tests and x-rays. All the blood work came out fine, and all organs tested normal. But her xrays showed lungs with some bronchial inflammation and one lung lobe is collapsed. The vet said her collapsed lung looked chronic, i.e. an ongoing, not sudden condition, and was not the cause of her sudden lethagry. Her heart is fine. She was also just a little constipated according to the xray. My cat has never had an asthma attack in her 16 years. Nor has she coughed. Nevertheless, evidently she has been suffering from bronchial disease. The vet gave her fluids, extracted the fecal material that was constipating her, and sent her home with me. The vet said her lethargy would go away. I am not sure, cause it didn't seem anything was done to change her lethargy except give her fluids. And I don't understand what effect the collapsed lung is having on her. Has anyone heard of a cat with a collapsed lung?

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Don't know about lung problems but I've heard fluids are very important and can do wonders. I know a nurse who said she kept her old cat going for years by giving her fluids regularly.

Good luck..

    Bookmark   May 15, 2007 at 7:58PM
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Sounds like the vet didn't take time to explain the collapsed lung options or prognosis. I would go back and talk to him(her) to know what to expect. Just giving fluids is probably good but to what end is it for?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 1:00AM
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One has to be careful with fluids, especially with lung and/or heart problems.

I would call the vet and ask more questions. Did he not think she should be put on some type of antibiotic?
She's going to be lethargic with the loss of lung capacity, but a sudden change would also have me concerned.

Is she improving any?

    Bookmark   May 16, 2007 at 11:37AM
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Thanks for your responses. I have talked to another vet in the practice who was more helpful. There is actually nothing that can be done for my cat's condition. She may recover only so far as being more alert and a little less lethargic, or she may not. We are going to see what happens in the next 24 hours.

Annz - there is no need for an antibiotic, as there is no infection, her white blood cell count is normal, there is no fever.

Thank you all for your prayers for my little angel.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 6:18PM
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Often older cats do not eat or drink enough and they get dehydrated. Fluids makes them feel better and they will eat and drink more. If the cat is not stressed by the procedure it can be very helpful.

I wish you the best of luck with this. I hope the fluids improve her condition. They really may!

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 9:02PM
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I've had a cat with a collapsed lung. The treatment was to decrease the fluid in the chest cavity and put her in an oxygen chamber at a higher pressure than her surroundings so that more oxygen filled and expanded the lung. Her lung reinflated and she went home 2 days later. There wasn't any apparent reason for the lung collapse as far as the vet could tell. No trauma or injury or illness. I just noticed her breathing a bit heavy and a bit of drool right before bed, and when she was the same the next morning, in to the vet she went. I thought she had an upper respiratory illness and had no idea it was so serious. She was only 2 at the time, and she's 13 now. That was the last serious vet visit she ever had and has been perfectly healthy since then.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2007 at 9:43PM
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Thanks Live Wire Oak. The vet did tell me that for a younger cat with no apparent reason for a lung collapse, they can re-inflate it. But for a 16-year-old cat showing bronchial disease on the xray, there is no remedy.

    Bookmark   May 18, 2007 at 11:41AM
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