Manhattan, Kansas-Several new therapies for feline asthma are being tested at Kansas State University (KSU) on cats that don't respond to conventional asthma therapy.
Several new therapies for feline asthma are being tested at Kansas State University (KSU) on cats that don't respond to conventional asthma therapy.
One such therapy currently being evaluated is a human asthma medicationcalled zafirlukast, (trade name, Accolate). No studies have proven its efficacyin cats, however.
Lisa Moore, DVM, assistant professor of clinical sciences at KSU, saysshe hopes to test the drug's safety in cats, as well as its efficacy andproper dosage.
Another new treatment is a steroid inhalant, much like human inhalants.
Since it can be tricky to encourage a cat to inhale at the right time,a device is being used that allows the owner to place a mask over the cat'smouth, allowing the cat to inhale the medicine. The
steroid inhalant only affects the air passages.
Another drug, called terbutaline, is being used as an injection to quicklygive relief after an asthma attack has begun. Moore says terbutaline hasbeen the subject of some studies, but "more information is needed onall these therapies."
Moore is currently studying the airways in asthmatic cats, which shesays may lead to a study on zafirlukast.
Asthma is estimated to afflict 1 percent of the more than 12 millioncats in the United States.