Heidi's unusual cough

Heidi is a beautiful 6 year old male cat whose owner brought him to see us in July as Heidi had developed a bad cough. Dr Suzanne started him on some antibiotics and asked his owner to bring him back in two weeks time. At the revisit, Heidi's owner reported that there was no improvement in his cough. Heidi was then given Cortisone and he started showing some improvement. Our veterinarian diagnosed that Heidi had feline asthma.

However, when Heidi was still having problems with his cough in September, the veternarians and his owner became concerned that something else was the matter. Dr Raj admitted Heidi into hospital for some x-rays and a Bronchial Airway Lavage. This involves washing water into the patient's lungs, sucking it back out and then sending the water off for analysis. The procedure required that Heidi be placed under general anaesthetic and placed on fluids to protect his liver and kidneys. Nurse Kara monitored his vital signs and blood pressure throughout the procedure.

When Heidi's lung sample result came back from the laboratory a few days later, Dr Raj was surprised to discover that Heidi has tested positive for lung worm. This is a parasite that lives inside the animal's lungs and can cause serious health problems. Thankfully this parasite is very rare in Australia. Dr Raj diagnosed that the asthma was being caused by the lung worm and once the parasite was treated, the asthma should improve. Thanks to Heidi's owner's continued concern, and our veternarians and nurse team's knowledge and experience, Heidi is now being treated and should make a full recovery in no time.

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