Your cat's liver is the largest and most important organ in the body and is the only organ that can regenerate itself. It plays a vital role in detoxifying and filtering impurities in the blood. The liver converts your cat's food into nutrients, synthesizes enzymes and proteins, and produces bile that helps break down fats and detoxifies and filters impurities, drugs, and poisons from the blood. Liver disorders can be caused by infection (bacterial, viral, or fungal), parasitic diseases, or metabolic conditions.
As the liver plays a vital role in the well-being of your cat, the signs and symptoms of the disease may vary and can include loss-of-appetite, diarrhea, vomiting, and yellowing of eyes, skin, and mucous membrane.
Hepatitis is the inflammation of the liver. It is a liver disorder caused by a bacterial or viral infection that can be transmitted through contact with an infected animal's blood, saliva, or feces. The two common types of hepatitis in cats are cholangiohepatitis and lymphocytic portal hepatitis.
Cholangiohepatitis involves inflammation of the bile ducts and liver and is a common disorder that can be caused by a bacterial or fungal infection. Cats with this problem may also have other digestive disorders such as pancreatitis and inflammatory bowel disease.
Chronic cholangiohepatitis hepatitis in cats can be caused by an immune-mediated disease or infection such as feline leukemia, feline infectious peritonitis, toxoplasmosis, or liver flukes. It involves inflammation and swelling that restricts the bile flow resulting in bile retention in the liver and the biliary ducts and liver damage caused by the caustic nature of bile fluids.
- High fever
- Poor appetite
- Jaundice (yellowing of the eye)
Lymphocytic Portal Hepatitis
Lymphocytic portal hepatitis in cats is an inflammatory liver disease thought to be related to the immune function. It appears to be more prevalent in older cats that may have hyperthyroidism.
- Poor appetite
- Enlarged liver
- Weight loss
Your vet will recommend the best course of cat hepatitis treatment and make suggestions as to how best to protect other pets in your house. You can support your cat by making them comfortable and reducing any pain or discomfort they may be experiencing. Milk Thistle is used holistically to support the liver and can aid in cat hepatitis treatment.