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Survival time and prognostic factors in cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus: 114 cases (2000–2009)

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  • 1 Istituto Veterinario di Novara, Strada Provinciale 9, 28060 Granozzo con Monticello (NO), Italy
  • | 2 Istituto Veterinario di Novara, Strada Provinciale 9, 28060 Granozzo con Monticello (NO), Italy
  • | 3 Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland
  • | 4 Department of Animal Medicine, Production and Health, University of Padova, 35020 Legnaro (PD), Italy
  • | 5 Local Health Unit, via Amendola 2, 42010 Reggio Emilia (RE), Italy
  • | 6 Institute of Veterinary Physiology, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland
  • | 7 The study was performed at the Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland.
  • | 8 Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland
  • | 9 Istituto Veterinario di Novara, Strada Provinciale 9, 28060 Granozzo con Monticello (NO), Italy
  • | 10 Clinic for Small Animal Internal Medicine, Vetsuisse Faculty, University of Zurich, 8057 Zurich, Switzerland
  • | 11 Department of Animal Medicine, Production and Health, University of Padova, 35020 Legnaro (PD), Italy

Abstract

Objective—To determine overall survival time and identify prognostic factors associated with survival time in cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—114 cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus.

Procedures—Data for analysis included history, signalment, physical examination findings, hematologic and serum biochemical data, presence of ketoacidosis, and diagnosis of concurrent diseases at initial evaluation. The effects of possible predictors on survival time were determined by calculating hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

Results—Median survival time of diabetic cats was 516 days (range, 1 to 3,468 days); 70%, 64%, and 46% lived longer than 3, 6, and 24 months, respectively. Survival time was significantly shorter for cats with higher creatinine concentrations, with a hazard of dying approximately 5% greater for each increase of 10 μg/dL in serum creatinine concentration (adjusted HR, 1.005; 95% CI, 1.003 to 1.007). Ketoacidosis was not significantly associated with survival time (HR, 1.02; 95% CI, 0.590 to 1.78).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus had a fair to good prognosis. High serum creatinine concentration at diagnosis was associated with a poor outcome, likely because of the adverse effects of renal dysfunction. Ketoacidosis apparently was not associated with decreased survival time, suggesting that this complication should not necessarily be regarded as unfavorable.

Abstract

Objective—To determine overall survival time and identify prognostic factors associated with survival time in cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—114 cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus.

Procedures—Data for analysis included history, signalment, physical examination findings, hematologic and serum biochemical data, presence of ketoacidosis, and diagnosis of concurrent diseases at initial evaluation. The effects of possible predictors on survival time were determined by calculating hazard ratios (HRs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs).

Results—Median survival time of diabetic cats was 516 days (range, 1 to 3,468 days); 70%, 64%, and 46% lived longer than 3, 6, and 24 months, respectively. Survival time was significantly shorter for cats with higher creatinine concentrations, with a hazard of dying approximately 5% greater for each increase of 10 μg/dL in serum creatinine concentration (adjusted HR, 1.005; 95% CI, 1.003 to 1.007). Ketoacidosis was not significantly associated with survival time (HR, 1.02; 95% CI, 0.590 to 1.78).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cats with newly diagnosed diabetes mellitus had a fair to good prognosis. High serum creatinine concentration at diagnosis was associated with a poor outcome, likely because of the adverse effects of renal dysfunction. Ketoacidosis apparently was not associated with decreased survival time, suggesting that this complication should not necessarily be regarded as unfavorable.

Contributor Notes

Supported in part by a grant from the Policlinico di Monza, Italy.

Presented as an abstract at the 20th Annual Congress of the European College of Veterinary Internal Medicine—Companion Animals, Sevilla, Spain, September 2011.

Address correspondence to Dr. Zini (ezini@vetclinics.uzh.ch).