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Surgical Treatment for Feline Hyperthyroidism

Although surgery is an option for cats suffering from hyperthyroidism, it is not always regarded as the best solution. Surgical removal of the thyroid glands requires anesthesia which involves risk, especially for older cats.

Disadvantages & Risks of Surgical Treatment

  • Abnormal thyroid tissues may inadvertently get left behind
  • Hyperthyroidism could then recur within 6 to 24 months
  • Pre and post-surgical monitoring is expensive
  • Damage could occur to parathyroid glands (maintain stable blood-calcium levels)
  • Permanent “voice change” if laryngeal nerve is damaged
  • Horner's syndrome of the eyes may result
  • Supplementation tablets are sometimes still required

There are unique advantages to surgery. If no complications develop, surgery eradicates the need for further treatment as it is considered permanent. It also doesn’t require a special facility.

With this in mind, Radioactive Iodine Therapy (I-131) still remains the most effective treatment option, as it is the least likely to lead to adverse side effects. More on Radioactive Iodine Therapy for feline hyperthyroidism.

If you have questions or concerns regarding your senior cat's health, contact your veterinarian.

More questions about feline hyperthyroidism and treatment? Learn more about the common treatments for feline hyperthyroidism.