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FAQs

MEGACOLON

IN CATS


























Please Note:

The purpose of this website is purely for the education of those who may have concerns about Megacolon. The stories and information contained on this site is in no way a substitute for the advice and knowledge of a vet. Be sure to contact your vet for the best possible diagnosis and possible treatment.

FAQs

(Under Construction, some questions may not be answered yet)
Colectomy for dogs
Loose stools after colectomy
Cisapride and Lactalose combination
How does Propulsid work?
What is SubTotal and Total Colectomy?
I see you mention Propulsid. What about Cisapride?
Definitions of words mentioned
What are some of the causes of Megacolon?"
Common treatments of Megacolon

Do you know of any studies of dogs with megacolon? My dog suffers from this and I am concerned about the surgery as it is not a common operation performed on dogs.
Thanks,
tanya

Hi again, Tanya!
Well, I've found three different things that tend to indicate that colectomy for dogs is more complicated than it is for cats...for some reason, there tends to be more incidence of motility problems, gallbladder problems, etc., in dogs (however, most of this information is outdated, from a few years ago). Here are a couple of the links I found discussing colectomy in dogs:
Entrez PubMed
Entrez PubMed
Megacolon in dogs
Here's a more positive article on the surgery:
Dog Constipation Help from AllergicPet.com
Hope this helps!!
Paula:)
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hi my 12 year old male diabetic kitty had a subtotal colectomy one year ago. he is doing fine, except his bowel movements are very loose. he eats purina special diet for urinary care. is there something else he can eat to firm up his stools a bit?
thanks lyn

Hi there, Lyn!
Loose stool is extremely common in cats after a subtotal or total colectomy, and the general consensus is that the stool should in time start to firm up on its own, described as a "cow patty" consistency. If your boy's stool is looser than that even a year later, or is at this point similar to the cow patty consistency, and you want to try to firm it up a little more, I can suggest a couple of things.
The next time you're at the grocery store, or the health food store, pick up a couple of things: oat bran and acidophilous. Bran , you'd normally think is used to loosen up firm stool, but it also works to bulk up loose stool, so mixing a quarter teaspoon of oat bran in each of his meals should produce results in about a week.
Acidophilos(which you can either get in pure form at the health food store or you can also find in plain yogurt, but since he's a diabetic, you may have to check out whether or not the other ingredients in yogurt would be safe to give) helps to make sure the intestines have a healthy bacterial balance, which will also promote a healthier bowel movement. (hope you're not blushing....I"m so used to talking about poop now, LOL!).
If your vet okays giving plain unflavored yogurt, see if your fella will eat plain yogurt on his own(some cats love the stuff!), but if he doesn't, you can get acidophilos in liquid form, and start with a spoonful or two in his drinking water, lessening if you need to.
Chances are the acidophilos alone may help. His stools are supposed to be loose, but they could be a little more loose than normal at this point if he had a good course of antibiotics after his surgery or at any point since then. Neither the oat bran or the acidophilos in pure form is contraindicated for diabetes, so both of those should be a good place to start.
Write back and let me know how your fella does, and if you get results or not. If neither of those helps, we can check into trying some other things. Good luck, and kiss that fella for me! Blessings, Paula(TeeTee's Mom)
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HI, MY NAME IS LAURIE I HA'PPEND ON YOUR WEBSITE LOOKING FOR ANSWERS. PEANUTS IS 15 AND WAS DIAGNOSED 3 YEARS AGO. I HAVE HIM ON LACTULOSE AND CISAPRIDE AND SENSITIVE STOMACH DRY HIIL'S FOOD.
HE WILL NOT EAT PUMPKIN AND I DON'T KNOW HOW MUCH METAMUCIL TO GIVE HIM...HE WEIGHS 9 LBS. ALSO, DO I MIX IT WITH WATER AND USE A SYRINGE OR MIX IT WITH HIS WET FOOD. I HAVE SO SO MANY OTHER CATS ITS HARD TO KEEP AN EYE ON HIM 24/7. I RECENTLY UPPED HIS CISAPRIDE TO 4 A DAY AND IT SEEMS TO BE HELPING. IF YOU HAVE ANY OTHER IDEAS PLEASE E-MAIL ME....I APPRECIATE IT VERY MUCH. THANK YOU, LAURIE

It sounds like you are doing a wonderful job! Right now I don't have any other suggestions. If Peanuts is going well and his stools are semi-soft, that is all you can ask for. I have never used metamucil and don't know much about it other than for a human, you must drink lots of water when you take it. So I would think just a tiny tiny TINY bit with lots of water should be good. Since you have dealt with this for 3 years now, you must doing the right things. Just don't do too much without consulting a vet (like the extra cisapride). Sue
THANKS SUE.........THE ONLY QUESTION I MIGHT ASK YOU IS ABOUT THE LACTUOSE........HE HATES IT WITH A PASSION!!! HE IS A LONG HAIR SILVER TABBY AND IT DRIBBLES ALL OVER HIS FUR....I CLEAN HIM UP OF COURSE WITH WATER BUT IT TAKES ME AND MY HUSBAND TO HOLD HIM DOWN! WHEN HE HEARS ME OPEN THE BOTTLE HE RUNS AWAY. ( I GUESS I WOULD TOO)...ANY THOUGHTS ON THAT?
THANKS SO MUCH, LAURIE

ooooo, I don't know other than mix it in his food. Really stinky stuff where he can't smell it?
HI SUE, WANTED TO UPDATE YOU ON PEANUTS........WE HAVE STOPPED THE CISAPRIDE.......HE'S NOW GETTING 2 ENEMAS A WEEK BUT IT SEEMS TO BE WORKING BETTER ALONG WITH THE LACTULOSE. HOW ARE YOUR GUYS ( OR GUY) DOING? HAVE A GOOD ONE, LAURIE
That is excellent news about Peanuts! Hope it all continues well. My Bunny and Mouse (aka Bobbi) are both doing quite well. They are not full blown like Peanuts is, so they are easier to manage.
Keep sending updates, we love them!! Sue
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Cisapride (Propulsid) has been widely used in the management of chronic constipation and megacolon in cats. It accelerates the emptying of the stomach and propulsion of food through the intestines by increasing the rhythmic muscle contractions. It is usually recommended that cisapride be given orally 15 minutes before feeding.
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Subtotal
Total
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Propulsid is the brand name for cisapride.
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Megacolon: Feline megacolon is a syndrome rather than a specific disease. If the nerves to the colon do not function properly, the muscles of the colonic wall will not contract properly. If this happens, the muscles stretch and the colon enlarges in diameter. In addition, the fecal material is not moved out of the body and severe constipation may result. This massive enlargement of the colon and the resulting constipation is called megacolon. The colon may have a diameter 3-4 times that of a normal cat.
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Most cases are idiopathic (a cause cannot be determined), and these seem to be a result of malfunction of the intestinal tract, more specifically the colon. Some other causes are: pelvic outlet obstruction, complications of neutering, perineal herniation, and pelvic fractures that have not healed correctly (usually from a run-in with a car). Some deformities of the hind end may also indicate the absence of correct nerve function in the colon.
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Cisapride
A prescription drug that is becoming increasingly hard to find that causes the intestines to push the bowel matter along.
Mineral Oil
Sometimes given WITH FOOD that will allow an easier pasage of fecal matter.
Lactulose
A prescription drug that increases the moisture in the stool, thus allowing for a softer stool.
Pumpkin (Canned)
A natural remedy for increasing the moisture in the stool. Some cats will eat it without having to mix it in food.
Metamucil
Fiber that increases the bulk in the intestines. Sometimes will act as a laxative if the colon still has function, but will increase the bulk in the colon thus making it detrimental to megacolon if there is no function left in the intestinal tract.
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