Fainting in cats

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Fainting or syncope in cats is a medical condition which takes the form of temporary consciousness loss. Recovery is spontaneous. This happens when there is a temporary halt in the blood supply to the brain. This results in stopping of nutrient and oxygen delivery. Heart disease is a major reason for blood supply interruption. This is frequently found in older cats.

Syncope inducers

The list of syncope inducing causes are heart diseases, emotional stress, glucose low concentration in the blood, excitement, and diseases result in thickening of the blood. The presence of sodium and calcium in the blood leads to fainting in cats. Situational syncope is linked with a cough, urination, pulling cat’s collar, defecation, and swallowing.

Even though syncope is a temporary event in a cat’s life, it is vital to diagnose the underlying cause. The latter can be of a progressive and chronic nature. It could even lead to death. Consult your veterinarian. The professional will go over the health history of your kitty. A detailed physical examination will then be done. The list of routine laboratory tests includes biochemistry profile, urinalysis, and complete blood count. Most often, the results of these tests will be normal. However, if the syncope is caused by hypoglycemia, the biochemistry profile will indicate lower than normal glucose levels in the blood. The concentration of insulin also comes into the picture. The veterinarian may do an echocardiography and electrocardiogram to find out whether your cat suffers from any underlying heart disease.

Steps taken to reduce syncope

You may be requested by the veterinarian to calculate heart rate at the time of your cat’s syncopic episodes while it is at home. A 24 hour ECG monitoring of the kitty could be recommended in case there is a possibility of an underlying heart problem. The head could be subjected to computed tomography (CT) scan. The cerebrospinal fluid could also be analyzed if the cat is suspected of suffering from brain disease.

Syncope is a reversible and temporary condition. You cat will regain its consciousness soon after a bout of faintness. It is, however, vital to treat the underlying cause as quickly as possible. Not doing so will increase the frequency of the occurrence. In-case medications make up the cause of syncope, the veterinarian will cease the ingestion of such medicines. If it is seen that such medications are needed for the survival of your kitty, alternative drugs will be prescribed.

It is vital that you protect your car from any stimulus which triggers syncope. If the cause is cardiac insufficiency, then physical efforts must be curtailed. The heart must not be subjected to more than usual stress. The incidence of excitement must be reduced to the maximum. Take your cat for checkups at periodic intervals.

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