Impairment of Glucose Tolerance in Hyperthyroid Cats

Hoenig M. and Ferguson D.C.

J Endocrinol, 1989. 121(2): p.249-51.


Intravenous glucose tolerance tests were performed in eight adult cats before and after a 4-week treatment with thyroxine. The untreated cats had a mean fasting blood glucose concentration of 7.7 +/- 0.3 mmol/l and a mean fasting insulin concentration of 88 +/- 31 pmol/l which were not significantly different from mean fasting glucose and insulin concentrations after 4 weeks of thyroxine administration (6.9 +/- 0.2 mmol/l and 101 +/- 28 pmol/l respectively). At 120 min after glucose injection, the glucose concentration in untreated cats returned to baseline concentrations as did the insulin concentration. However, in the hyperthyroid cats both glucose and insulin concentrations were significantly (P less than 0.001) higher (13.6 +/- 0.8 mmol/l and 245 +/- 17 pmol/l respectively) in comparison with the baseline and untreated cats. The t1/2 for glucose disappearance was significantly higher in the cats rendered hyperthyroid, and the glucose disposal rate constant (K) was significantly lower in this group. It is concluded that hyperthyroidism in cats leads to impairment of glucose tolerance possibly due to peripheral insulin resistance.