Feline focus: Diagnostic testing for feline thyroid disease: hypothyroidism

Peterson ME.

Compend Contin Educ Vet 2013;35:E1.

Although naturally occurring hypothyroidism is very rare in cats, iatrogenic hypothyroidism is a recognized complication of treatment for hyperthyroidism. However, confirming the diagnosis of hypothyroidism in cats is not generally straightforward. The potential for false-negative and false-positive results exists with all thyroid function tests, especially in older cats that may have concurrent nonthyroidal illness. Therefore, all thyroid function test results must be interpreted in light of the cat’s history, clinical signs, and other laboratory findings. If a low to low-normal serum thyroxine (T4) value is found in a cat that has been treated for hyperthyroidism, repeating the total T4 analysis, determining free T4 and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) concentrations, or performing a TSH stimulation test or thyroid scintigraphy may be needed to confirm the diagnosis.