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J Feline Med Surg. 2010 Jun;12(6):487-90. doi: 10.1016/j.jfms.2010.01.013. Epub 2010 Mar 12.

Congenital hypothyroidism in a kitten resulting in decreased IGF-I concentration and abnormal liver function tests.

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  • 1Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, Switzerland.


A 7-month-old male kitten was presented with chronic constipation and retarded growth. Clinical examination revealed disproportional dwarfism with mild skeletal abnormalities and a palpable thyroid gland. The presumptive diagnosis of congenital hypothyroidism was confirmed by low serum total thyroxine (tT(4)) concentration prior to and after the administration of thyroid stimulation hormone (TSH), increased endogenous TSH concentration and abnormal thyroid scintigraphic scan. The kitten had abnormal liver function tests and decreased insulin-like growth factor 1 (IGF-1) concentration, both of which returned to normal in correspondence with an improvement of the clinical signs after 6 weeks of thyroxine therapy. Congenital hypothyroidism is a rare disease that may present with considerable variation in clinical manifestation. In cases in which clinical signs are ambiguous, disorders such as portosystemic shunt and hyposomatotropism have to be taken into account as differential diagnosis. As hypothyroidism may be associated with abnormal liver function tests and low IGF-1 concentrations, test results have to be interpreted carefully.

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