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Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Nishi's Having Seizures :(

My eldest cat (3 years old) Nishi started to have seizures all of a sudden. It started January 3, when i saw her fell from the foot of the bed, about 1.5 ft. high, and thought she just got out of balance. I followed her immediately and thought there was something wrong. Her ears were all outwards, and she was holding her one paw up. I got scared and thought she fell bad and carried her instantly to inspect and comfort her. Then she started twitching violently. She got me scratched up pretty bad but I did not let go because I was afraid that she might hurt herself. The seizure lasted for about a minute. My husband and I were in shock and I started crying because I didn't understand what the hell just happened. Nishi foamed in the mouth, and she was very exhausted.

We immediately took her to the vet clinic to get her checked up. They did a full blood chemistry to eliminate cause of seizure, but didn't find anything significant. I described what I saw, and how long it lasted. Seizure incidents are uncommon to cats, but unfortunately the doctor couldn't tell us what's wrong with Nishi. Blood test came out negative, there's no infection, temperature was normal. She also have an appetite, and she's very much alert and active after the incident. The doctor said she might have an idiopathic epilepsy, which just means seizure that has no apparent cause. They offered to admit Nishi, but they also said that all they can do is observation at most. Their advise was to bring home Nishi and observe, then take her back if anything happens. And that's what we did. Besides, I'm not really comfy leaving my cats in the vet clinic where there's more possibility that they can get exposed to other diseases.

5 days has passed after the first incident, Nishi was fine. So we were quite hopeful that it was a one time thing. But all of a sudden it happened again, without clear cause or trigger. It lasted for a minute again. After the seizure, Nishi was again foaming in the mouth, and very much exhausted. Then she recovered, walking around like nothing happened - only, she seemed to be disoriented. She seem to not recognize the house she's living in. She kept exploring everything, sniffing everything. But other than that, she looks perfectly normal.

Again, the vet couldn't explain what has occurred. She wasn't poisoned, she has no infection. She didn't have any injury in the head. Nothing. Their best bet is epilepsy. They prescribed us a drug to give her to help manage the seizures - but not to cure it. Since there seems to be no apparent cause, they can't cure anything. Seizures are very rare in cats, and probably that's why there are less veterinarians that know or expert about this. It's too unfortunate that Nishi got this problem - yet better than fatal diseases.

The seizures are getting more and more frequent, and all we could do is to observe the severity, how long it takes, and what exactly the seizures look like so we can tell it to the doctor. The doctor also mentioned that an MRI might help, but they don't think there's any MRI for cats around the metro. So yeah, we are kinda fucked.

Every time it happens, I cry. My husband is leaving tomorrow, and I don't know what I will do if Nishi would have seizures again - this time with just myself to rely on. I am so afraid. I don't want to lose Nishi. I love Nishi so much. Nishi has changed a huge part of myself and my life. I do not want to lose her. I am so afraid that one day, she will have a seizure and will not be able to recover from it. I don't know what else to do. I get paranoid all the time. I couldn't get out of the house because I am afraid that Nishi might have another incident and might hurt herself. I couldn't sleep well, because I always wanted to be aware of my surroundings, be able to get up immediately in case Nishi gets an attack when I'm asleep. I really wish the seizures would just magically go away, or at least tell us what's wrong so we know how to correct it.


  1. Hi!
    I truly hope that this is not the case but have you ever considered that it might be a brain tumor?

    This is symptoms of brain tumor:

    Symptoms and Types

    The most common indication of a brain tumor in cats is seizures, especially seizures that begin to occur after the cat has reached at least five years of age. There are other signs which may suggest a brain tumor, including abnormal behavior and mental status, changes in habits or learned behaviors, head pressing, over-sensitivity to pain or to being touched in the neck area, bumping into objects and doorways, and vision problems that lead to circling motions, uncoordinated movement and ataxia (drunken gait). Cats may also vocalize, or meow, more, and may not purr as frequently.

    I truly hope that you will find the cause and that she will get better.

  2. Thanks for the well wishes Angela, I too hope that it isn't tumor. She's just 3 years old and have no other symptoms but just the seizure. Apetite is fine, she is also alert and also plays. She still fights with our other cats which is quite normal. We wanted to get her an MRI but i'm not so sure if it's available here for animals. For the mean time, we were advised to just observe, give her the seizure management drug. I hope for the best, and pray that it just magically goes away :(.

  3. Hi Again!
    How is Nishi? any more seizures? i been keeping you guys in my mind and im hoping she will get better.
    Regards / Angela

  4. Thank you so much for your thoughts Angela, we really appreciate it :). Nishi is currently in phenobarbital prescribed for a month. She's not having seizures when she's taking it. However, I don't want to have her in phenobarbital forever, there must be some way that the vets here could determine if this really is epilepsy or there's something more serious than that. Unfortunately, it is still not conclusive, so after a month of taking the drug (which is in about a few days) nishi will have another blood chemistry. Not sure what's the significance if that will ever detect what is wrong (the first blood chemistry didn't show any problems), but I am hopeful that the vets would be able to shed some more light about her health. Nevertheless, I am happy that she's not having seizures at the moment, and that she's normal in eating, playing and biting :).

  5. Im happy to here that she is responding well to the medication. And i truly hope you will find the cause of the seizures. Im keeping you all in my thoughts and im praying for hear recovery.
    regards / Angela

  6. Hi Angela, thanks for the prayers :). Until now, the vets doesn't know what is causing the seizures, but she's indeed responding to the phenobarbital drug. I'm also becoming more knowledgeable and being able to manage when it happens. I do get a lot of scratches from preventing her to hurt herself when it happens, but oh well, i'd rather get injured than her. It's easier for me to treat myself. I do not want her to be in phenobarbital forever, so after we move this month to another country, my husband and I will take her to another vet and see what are our other options. Other than that, all is well. She eats and play and sleep and bite me a lot :P.