What is Vidalta?
Vidalta is a prescription-only medicine (POM-V) and is available in 10mg and 15mg strength, dark pink coloured tablets. They are usually given once daily to control the symptoms of hyperthyroidism in cats. The tablets should not be crushed and can be given, either with or without food.
Article written by Alan Lack, MRCVS - A Vet from www.vetdispense.co.uk
The article reflects the opinions of the author and should only be used as a guide. It can only be taken in conjunction with advice from your vet. No liability is accepted for accuracy of content or any other matter.
How Does Vidalta Work?
Vidalta tablets contain carbimazole. After carbimazole is absorbed, it is converted to an active form: methimazole. Methimazole prevents an enzyme that is essential for the production of thyroxine from working.
What is Hyperthyroidism?
Hyperthyroidism is a condition that tends to affect older cats (often older than 13 years of age) and is caused by an over production of the hormone thyroxine by the thyroid gland.
In the cat, two thyroid glands are found in the neck, either side of the wind pipe (trachea). It is not possible to feel these glands in normal cats as they are very small and are hidden by soft-tissue structures in the neck. In some cats, one or both of these glands will increase in size and start producing too much thyroxine. This causes cats to show a number of symptoms including:
How is Hyperthyroidism Diagnosed in Cats?
If your cat shows some of the symptoms of hyperthyroidism, you should visit your vet who will perform a thorough examination, take a blood sample and may arrange blood pressure testing. In the majority of cases of hyperthyroidism, the thyroxine (or T4) result will be elevated.
Your vet will also usually check the renal and liver values for any evidence of kidney or liver problems before starting treatment.
What Are The Treatment Options?
At present there are 3 different treatment options. Cats can undergo surgery to remove the affected thyroid tissue, can take medicines such as felimazole or vidalta to reduce the levels of thyroxine in the blood stream or can have radioactive iodine treatment.
The option that is best for your cat will depend upon various factors such as age and presence of other conditions. Your Vet will take everything into consideration when advising the best course of action.
My Vet Has Prescribed Vidalta, Are There Any Side Effects or Special Precautions?
Vidalta is a prescription-only medication and can have some side-effects (in the same way that most drugs can). Vidalta is not normally used in pregnant or lactating cats. Vomiting, diarrhoea, inappetence and coat changes are some of the more common side-effects, although in the author's experience, these symptoms are rare. Very occasionally, cats that have pre-existing kidney problems may develop symptoms of renal dysfunction after starting treatment with vidalta. This is something that your vet will be aware of and is the reason for blood sampling before and during treatment.
Women of a child bearing age should wear gloves when handling litter and/or vomit of animals being treated with Vidalta.
My Cat Has Been Prescribed Vidalta, where Can I Find Affordable Treatment?
Vidalta is a prescription-only medication and is only available from your Vet or a pharmacist with a prescription from your Vet.
VetDispense operates from a fully legal practice premises that is registered with the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons and is open to inspection by the Veterinary Medicines Directorate. The Vidalta dispensed by VetDispense is exactly the same as that given to you at your own vets but is often available at a much lower cost.
Very occasionally, cats may show symptoms including depression, lethargy and breathing problems.
- Weight loss
- Increased Appetite (polyphagia) and increased frequency and volume of defaecation
- Increased drinking and urination (polydipsia & polyuria)
- Hyperactivity: cats can become more agitated and restless
- Occasional vomiting and/or episodes of diarrhoea
- High heart rates
- High blood pressure which may cause problems with vision
- Poor Coat Quality