Inflamed Chewing Muscles and Eye Muscles in Cats

PetMD Editorial
Sep 13, 2010
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As focal inflammatory myopathy is an immune-mediated disease, immune-suppressive drugs will be used to suppress the cat's immune system in order to limit the abnormal immune response. The dose is adjusted and maintained at lower doses to prevent restricted jaw mobility. In most patients long-term treatment will cover a minimum of six months before there is a resolution of symptoms.

Living and Management

Abnormal jaw movements remain a major problem because it limits the cat's ability to take food into its mouth. If the disease becomes chronic, the muscle bulk of the jaws and face may reduce considerably, further complicating the jaw's movements. In severe cases, stomach tubes may be required in order to feed your cat a liquid or gruel diet to maintain health. Your veterinarian will brief you about the proper care and use of the stomach tube, including how to clean before and after use. This is essential, as improperly cleaned, contaminated medical aids can cause severe infection.

Long-term use of immune-suppressive drugs are harmful for the patient's overall health. It is important to strictly follow the dosage and frequency of the medication in order to avoid complications related to their use. Never modify the dosage of the immune-suppressive drugs or stop the treatment without prior consulting with the veterinarian. If you have any concerns you should consult with your veterinarian first. You will also need to isolate your cat to some degree while it is under treatment to protect it from outside illnesses, and from transmissible illnesses from other animals or pets.

Most patients respond well to the immune-suppressive drugs and jaw mobility will return to normal. However, in chronic cases, the prognosis is often not good due to the loss of muscle bulk. Timely treatment is the single most important factor in the treatment of cats with focal inflammatory myopathy.

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