Iodine-131 Treatment for Feline
Hyperthyroidism - A one shot deal!

What is Hyperthyroidism?
Like an engine, the butterfly-shaped thyroid gland regulates many aspects of the body's metabolic rate. Your hyperthyroid cat has a tumor (98% are benign) that is producing too much thyroid hormone, which in turn keeps the cat's "engine" running at an abnormally high speed. This condition over-stimulates virtually every organ system, and causes reactions including behavioral changes, weight loss, excessive or decreased appetite, hyperactivity or lethargy, fever, rapid heartbeat and/or arrhythmia, shedding, increased water consumption & litter box output, diarrhea and osteoporosis. While fatal if left untreated, we can now cure this disease, and return your cat to a normal thyroid state! It's a one shot deal.

Other options and their risks
Anti-thyroid drugs (Tapazole):

  • Do not cure the disease or kill the tumor causing the problem
  • Side effects like nausea, vomiting, lethargy, lack of appetite, and hair loss/facial scabbing
  • Loss of vital white blood cells & blood clotting abilities
  • Long-term damage to liver and kidneys
  • Damage to owner-pet relationship due to difficulties in pilling your cat 1-3 times daily
  • Increased need for blood tests to monitor thyroid hormone levels and potential side effects
  • Cost of pills & blood tests is $500-$700 per year, for the rest of your cat's life

With Surgery there are always risks:

  • Anesthesia
  • Possible damage to/removal of parathyroid glands
  • Difficulty in identifying/removing the entire tumor
  • Persistence of hyperthyroidism post-surgery (80% will develop a tumor in the opposite side within one and a half years)
  • Cost of one surgery is $700-$1300
  • Often performed in two surgeries
  • Thyroid tissue in the chest that can not be removed and where the tumor can recur
  • Many cats still need I-131 therapy after undergoing one or more thyroidectomies

The Cure for Feline Hyperthyroidism is here...
A one shot deal!

 One injection of Radioiodine (I-131) is all it takes! The I-131 is absorbed into and destroys only the thyroid tumor -- wherever its location -- in roughly 98-99% of cats after just one injection. By law, this therapy requires a clinic stay of less than one week but does NOT require anesthesia; does NOT affect healthy thyroid tissue, the neighboring parathyroid glands, or have any harmful side effects. Your cat's thyroid function should become normal within one month, and should not require thyroid supplementation. Our treatment plan includes a review of records, x-ray interpretation; I-131 injection; daily monitoring (with as much love and care as we can safely give); feeding and hospitalization.  Following discharge, we will still be involved in your cat's health via discussions with you and a review of your cat's post treatment test results with your referring veterinarian.

  • This is a disease of older cats. Radiocat® regularly treats cats as old as 20...
  • We have successfully treated over 21,000 cats.

Your cat's hospitalization
Your cat must reach the safe and legal level of radiation release (less than a week) before coming home (often harder for the owner than the cat).  While we are waiting for the radiation levels to decline a specially trained Radiocat staff member will be caring for your cat.  During this time they will have access to a veterinarian should the need arise. We make every effort to make our feline guests as happy as possible. We limit their numbers to allow us to spend more time with each one. Our wards are large, airy, bright and comfortable. We can arrange to play special music or audiotapes of your voice for your cat, and have a TV/VCR complete with a library of "Kitty Videos". Toys and blankets are welcome (but not returnable). We'll work with you in determining a menu of your cat's favorite dishes, and take great pride in caring for and loving your pet in your absence. Daily progress reports on your cat are available.

Post-Treatment care
After your cat is released, we ask that you take two weeks of some basic, common sense safety precautions primarily regarding your cat's litter box output (we'll give you detailed written instructions along with a litter disposal kit). You'd probably receive more radiation from an extended flight or a day at the beach than you'll get from your cat once it's released, so it does NOT need to be isolated from you, your family and other pets, but it must stay indoors. Limiting (NOT halting) snuggling with your cat, and washing your hands after prolonged close contact is recommended. We'll help you figure out ways to accommodate these small changes in your daily routine. The potential risk to owners is extremely remote as regulations for using I-131 are much stricter for animals than for people, but we recommend pregnant women not participate in the cat's care during these two weeks. After two weeks, simply return to your normal pet-care and pet-loving routine!

Radiocat® ...  Behind the name
Dr. David S. Herring is a Board Certified Veterinary Radiologist who believes the pet's best interests are paramount and that the treatment should never be worse than the disease. He received advanced training in diagnostic ultrasound, echocardiography, radiography and nuclear medicine, and taught at Texas A&M and The Ohio State University. In 1985 he moved to the Baltimore-Washington area, where he became the first veterinarian to offer abdominal ultrasound and, in 1995, radioiodine therapy (I-131).

Dr. Rand S. Wachsstock is a graduate of The University of Illinois. Dr. Wachsstock taught both there and at Yale University. He has actively practiced emergency medicine since 1984 and believes comprehensive state-of-the-art medical care should be readily available to all pets. He owns and operates The Springfield Emergency Veterinary Hospital in Springfield, Virginia. Dr. Herring and Dr. Wachsstock are co-founders of Radiocat® , a veterinary practice dedicated exclusively to the care and treatment of feline hyperthyroidism.

A One Shot Deal... One injection of Radioiodine (I-131) is all it takes!

  • Experts agree: treatment of choice
  • More cost effective
  • Eliminates daily pilling
  • Does NOT require anesthesia
  • Does NOT affect healthy thyroid tissue
  • Does NOT damage any other tissue or organs, including the parathyroid glands
  • Does NOT have any harmful side effects
  • Destroys thyroid tumors wherever their location
  • Returns thyroid function to normal usually within one month




Section 0: Home - Section 1: General Overview - Section 2: Professional Page
Section 3: Doctors and Staff - Section 4: Radioiodine Therapy
Section 5: Medical Treatment - Section 6: Surgical Treatment - Section 7: Hospital Locations & Phone Numbers
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