New study sheds light on predictors of death or survival in cats with chronic inflammatory enteropathy
3 April 2023
Physical and laboratory variables measured at the time of histopathological diagnosis of chronic inflammatory enteropathy in cats were not predictors of death due to gastrointestinal disease or length of survival, a new study published in the latest issue of the Journal of Small Animal Practice (JSAP) has shown. However, the attainment of clinical remission did reduce the likelihood of subsequent death due to gastrointestinal disease.
In the study titled “Outcome of chronic inflammatory enteropathy in cats: 65 cases (2011-2021)”, cats diagnosed with chronic inflammatory enteropathy were retrospectively identified from three medical records databases, and follow-up information obtained from the referring veterinary surgeon. This information was used to determine if clinicopathological variables were associated with death due to gastrointestinal disease in diagnosed cats.
Feline chronic inflammatory enteropathy is a relapsing–remitting disease requiring long-term management, for which little information is known about the variables that might affect death and survival in cats. Identifying these variables is critical to help better inform treatment recommendations and owner expectations.
Sixty-five cats with chronic inflammatory enteropathy were included in the study, with follow-up information available for 54 cats (83%). Of these, 37% (n=20) were euthanised due to gastrointestinal disease and 46% (n=25) were alive and in clinical remission, with 64% (n=16) of these diagnosed with food-responsive enteropathy.
The study did not find a correlation between the tested clinicopathological variables, measured at the time of histopathological diagnosis, and death due to gastrointestinal disease, or length of survival in these cats before death due to gastrointestinal disease. This suggests that alternative diagnostic measures should be identified to definitively investigate outcome and survival in cats with chronic inflammatory enteropathy. Nevertheless, achieving clinical remission reduced the likelihood of subsequent death due to gastrointestinal disease. The study also adds weight to previous research which recommends the use of therapeutic diets in cats with chronic inflammatory enteropathy, although further research is needed to clarify a favourable treatment protocol.
First author, Dr Yuvani Bandara, commented: “Knowledge that the attainment of clinical remission reduces the likelihood of subsequent death due to feline chronic inflammatory enteropathy is important for veterinary surgeons and owners. We hope that our findings can act as a foundation for further research to investigate factors that support the attainment of clinical remission in affected cats. Thank you to BSAVA PetSavers for funding this study.”
The study was funded by BSAVA PetSavers, the grant awarding arm of the British Small Animal Veterinary Association. It is funded solely by charitable donations and has invested more than £2 million in vital clinical research and training programmes over the past 40 years to advance clinical investigations into pet animal medicine and surgery. For further information visit: http://new.bsava.com/petsavers
The full article can be found in the March issue of the Journal of Small Animal Practice and can be read online here: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/jsap.13569.
The Journal of Small Animal Practice is published monthly and access to all articles is free for BSAVA members. For information on how to become a BSAVA member visit https://new.bsava.com/Membership/Member-categories