Objective—To evaluate the esophageal passage of capsules in clinically normal cats and determine the incidence of prolonged transit or entrapment.
Animals—12 clinically normal adult cats.
Procedure—Esophageal transit of barium sulfatefilled capsules was evaluated fluoroscopically. Each cat was examined 3 times (36 examinations). Esophageal transit times were classified as normal (≤ 30 seconds) or prolonged (> 30 but ≤ 240 seconds). Capsules were considered entrapped when transit times were > 240 seconds.
Results—Transit times were normal in 10 of the 36 (27.8%) examinations, whereas times were prolonged in 7 (19.4%) examinations. Capsules became entrapped in the midcervical region of the esophagus during 19 (52.8%) examinations. Following termination of each examination, cats with entrapped capsules were fed a small amount (0.5 to 1 ounce) of food; this resulted in passage of the capsule to the stomach.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The possibility of medication-induced esophagitis should be considered when orally administering ulcerogenic drugs to cats. It is recommended that a small volume of food be given following medications to ensure complete esophageal clearance. (Am J Vet Res 2000;61: 655–657)