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J Feline Med Surg. 2010 Oct;12(10):807-10. doi: 10.1016/j.jfms.2010.04.005. Epub 2010 Jul 31.

Thiamine deficiency in a cat: resolution of MRI abnormalities following thiamine supplementation.

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Dick White Referrals, Veterinary Specialist Centre, London Road, Six Mile Bottom, Cambridgeshire CB8 0UH, UK.


Thiamine (vitamin B(1)) is an essential component of a number of metabolic pathways and thiamine deficiency results in a progressive encephalopathy in both humans and animals. Confirming thiamine deficiency is problematic and relies on demonstrating reduced red blood cells transketolase activity, or indirect methods including urinary organic acid analysis and dietary analysis. The characteristic and selective vulnerability of different brain regions in carnivores has been demonstrated by magnetic resonance (MR) imaging in the dog and cat as an aid to diagnosis. A 2-year-old, female, domestic shorthair cat was presented with an acute onset of seizures and ataxia. MR imaging was consistent with thiamine deficiency and supplementation resulted in a progressive clinical improvement. Repeated MR imaging 4 days after starting thiamine supplementation revealed near complete resolution of the MR abnormalities. Repeated MR imaging following appropriate therapy may be useful to further confirm thiamine deficiency.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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