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Author Topic: Tritrichomonas foetus test result was positive :(  (Read 14581 times)
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RollingMoss
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« on: September 01, 2008, 12:52:47 PM »

Hi everyone. I recently got myself some bengal kittens and soon after getting them they developed runny stools changing daily from runny, to cow pat like to semi hard. I went straight to the vet and got them tested for all the common parasites and also for T. Foetus. Today I got the results back that they are positive for the T. Foetus  Sad   

Has any one had experience with this parasite and can advise me about what I could do next? I am in the UK and the common drug to treat TF (Ronidazole) is not licensed here and not much is known about it as far as I can tell. The vet seems reluctant to use it, though if I want to go that route they will order it for me.  Has anyone used this drug sucessfully and would recommend using it and has anyone had any bad experiences with it?

I would be grateful for any advice or any tips for helping us get rid of this parasite.
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Sandi K
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« Reply #1 on: September 01, 2008, 01:04:47 PM »

Rollingmoss, Im sorry to hear about your kittens being ill, it doesnt sound like an easy parasite to deal with, I remember reading about it when our Sophers was having diahrrea but hers was from Coccidia.  I have not used that drug at all so I cant help you with any answers but I want to welcome you to Itchmo.  I hope some others here can help and please keep us posted on how it goes and how your kittens do. 
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JJ
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« Reply #2 on: September 01, 2008, 01:35:18 PM »

RollingMoss welcome to the forums. You have brought up a good subject that hopefully will bring you answers to help your precious babies from other members on here.
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MarySmith
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« Reply #3 on: September 01, 2008, 03:15:18 PM »

Welcome to Itchmo, RollingMoss!

I'm sorry that I cannot be of help regarding your question, but hope others who post here can.
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MarySmith
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« Reply #4 on: September 01, 2008, 03:31:09 PM »

Welcome, RollingMoss, I'm sorry your kitties are sick.
I don't know the answer to your question, but hopefully someone here will.
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3catkidneyfailure
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« Reply #5 on: September 01, 2008, 04:43:52 PM »

RollingMoss, I'm sorry to hear your kittens are sick. I have no direct experience with
this drug or disease, but was able to find this reference from a veterinary journal
fairly quickly:

http://www.druglib.com/abstract/go/[edited]in-jl_j-vet-intern-med_20060500.html
Efficacy of ronidazole for treatment of feline Tritrichomonas foetus infection.
Author(s): [edited]in JL, Copple CN, Papich MG, Poore MF, Stauffer SH, Birkenheuer AJ, Twedt DC, Levy MG

Affiliation(s): Department of Molecular Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27606, USA. Jody_[edited]in@ncsu.edu

Publication date & source: 2006-05, J Vet Intern Med., 20(3):536-43.



Here is also a precautionary note involving neutoxicity:
(access to this article can be purchased online)

http://www.ijpc.com/Abstracts/Abstract.cfm?ABS=2217
Ronidazole in the Treatment of Trichomonad Infections in Cats
Author(s):  Davidson Gigi S

Issue:  Nov/Dec 2006 - Veterinary Compounding
View All Articles in Issue

Abstract:  Tritrichomonas foetus, a microscopic single-celled flagellated protozoan parasite, traditionally identified as a cause of reproductive disease in cattle, has been demonstrated as an important cause of diarrhea in cats. Until recently, an effective antimicrobial treatment for feline Tritrichomonas foetus had not been identified. Since recommended dosages of antimicrobial drugs have failed in cats infected with Tritrichomonas foetus and in vitro studies have revealed multiple drug resistance, investigations continue in the effort to find an effective treatment. One particular study by Dr. Jody [edited]in noted no clinicopathological abnormalities or adverse effects with the use of ronidazole, and the research concluded that ronidazole administered at 30 to 50 mg/kg orally twice daily for 2 weeks was capable of resolving diarrhea and eradicating infections of Tritrichomonas foetus in cats. Clinical use of ronidazole has revealed a reversible, possibly dose-related, neurotoxicity. Cats receiving ronidazole should be


http://veterinarymedicine.dvm360.com/vetmed/Features/CVC-Highlights-A-new-treatment-for-feline-iTritric/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/185511?contextCategoryId=8678
Tritrichomonas foetus is a relatively new infectious cause of diarrhea in kittens. Tritrichomonas species can be identified in fecal samples through direct visualization of a wet mount preparation of fresh feces; trichomonads are flagellated organisms that have directed motility (they swim in a line) across the slide. Tritrichomonas species can also be identified through PCR testing* or fecal culture using special media.

Diarrhea caused by this protozoan is difficult to treat because the organism is unresponsive to most antibiotics and long-term antibiotic use may exacerbate the disease. A recent study by researchers at North Carolina State University showed that oral administration of ronidazole (30 to 50 mg/kg b.i.d. for two weeks) to treat Tritrichomonas species infections in kittens may resolve the diarrhea and eradicate the organism.1 Ten orogastrically infected kittens were studied, and no adverse drug events or clinicopathologic abnormalities were observed.1

Ronidazole is a nitroimidazole derivative that is similar to metronidazole and is typically used to treat avian protozoal infections; it is not approved in the United States for use in cats, so its side effects are not well-known. Ronidazole may be available through compounding pharmacies.** Monitor fecal improvement in patients receiving ronidazole. Concurrently providing a highly digestible diet is beneficial in these patients.

RollingMoss, I did check the Center for Veterinary Medicine Green Book and Adverse Reaction Reports, and this drug is not approved in the U.S. for veterinary usage. I think that's why the information on it and possible side effects are proving hard to find.



« Last Edit: September 01, 2008, 05:12:17 PM by 3catkidneyfailure » Logged
Mandycat
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« Reply #6 on: September 01, 2008, 04:56:24 PM »

RollingMoss,
     I have no experience with this drug, nor was I familiar with the parasite.  I found this article, however, that I found very informative and may be of particular interest to you since the authors are from the UK.  It even contains information on how you can obtain this drug in the UK if you wish to use it.  However, it also says that this parasite will very often die off on its own after a period of time ranging from a couple of months to 2 years.  Clearly, you have a difficult decision to make as to whether you want to treat with the drug or not.  I hope this information can help in some way.  I am so sorry your kitty has acquired this nasty parasite.  Good luck with whatever treatment you decide upon.  Hope you will keep us informed.

             http://www.fabcats.org/breeders/infosheets/tritrichomonas.html
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lesliek
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« Reply #7 on: September 01, 2008, 05:07:22 PM »

RollingMoss- Welcome to the forums. I'm sorry I don't have any experience with this parasite or the drug. Hope whatever you decide on will work.
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RollingMoss
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« Reply #8 on: September 02, 2008, 02:41:09 AM »

Hi!
 Thank you everyone for your kind words and support, its really appreciated   Smiley   Also thank you to those who have given info so far, fantastic! 
I really would like to hear from anyone with direct experience with the parasite.  Has anyone had their cat tested positive for it and decided to sit it out and wait for it to go on its own accord?  Or has anyone used the drug and had any problems?  It worries me that it is also not licensed in the USA also. Very scary.
Does anyone know if this T. Foetus can be harmful to humans and if a human was to get it what would be the symptoms to look out for?  Also this RDZ drug, could it cause long term side effects in the cats, perhaps that might show itself in 10 years down the line?  I would like to know if there perhaps might be another drug in development that is safer and would it be worth while waiting to see if this is the case?

I got my cat's stools to be tested the PCR way which is by testing for DNA traces of the parasite, its the most reliable way and I would reccommend this over pouches or microscope testing even though its probably a little more expensive. I went down this method of testing as I have read T. Foetus can be mistaken for Giardia very easily with the microscope/cultures. 

Thanks everyone again and I will keep you all posted   Smiley

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5CatMom
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« Reply #9 on: September 02, 2008, 03:16:55 AM »

Rollingmoss,

Welcome to Itchmo.

I'm sure your vet is very good, but because the ailment is unfamiliar, and the drug side effects scary, you might want to get a second opinion.

Even though the parasite you mention was found by lab analysis, it's possible that the lab made an error.

It's not clear from your post if you've already ruled out (or treated) for the common parasites.  As Sandi wrote, coccidia is very common in kittens.  Both of my sphynx kittens had very bad coccidia problems.  If the stool is very, very stinky, it could well be coccidia.

Suggest you check with the kittens' breeder, or the person from whom you got them.  Could be that they could offer some helpful info.

Just be sure to rule out the common stuff first, before going on with the more difficult things.

Please let us know what you find out. 

Good luck to you and your kitties.

5CatMom
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« Last Edit: September 02, 2008, 05:06:59 AM by 5CatMom » Logged
RollingMoss
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« Reply #10 on: September 02, 2008, 04:29:11 AM »

Hi 5CatMom,

We did first get the cats tested for all the common parasites and those tests came back negative. I have had the cats on a very bland diet for quite a while and it has not helped the diarrhea. The symptoms of the 2 cats do fit the symptoms of T. Foetus - very smelly stools, the stool's form changes daily with sometimes spots of blood but the kittens are still growing and otherwise very healthy, but I could I send off another batch of stools, but they would go to the same testing place which is at Capital Diagnostics in Edinburgh, UK.  I have been informed that apparently 85% of bengals have this parasite, either they are carriers (not showing symptoms) or that they actually show the symptoms of the parasite. Perhaps it is a good idea to send off another batch just to make sure.  I have spoken to the breeder extensively and they have been very helpful in trying to find a resolution, but again its all a bit unknown over here.  I will not start the RDZ drug until we are 100% sure it is T. Foetus and that the drug is safe.  We do not want to just treat them for other parasites (especially as other results were negative) as antibiotics and treaments for giardia etc prolong and even perhaps worsen the symptoms of T. Foetus. Both cats are fully wormed and vaccinated and appear very healthy and lively. I have not seen cats jump so high and run around so fast, they are very crazy cats !!!  Grin  My vet is very very good and is looking into all options including talking to specialists in this field.

 I have not come across anyone as yet who knowingly has cats with T. Foetus and is letting them sit it out and wait for it to resolve naturally. I would be very interested to know if this has been sucessful with anyone.
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5CatMom
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« Reply #11 on: September 02, 2008, 04:49:03 AM »

RollingMoss,

Were there other kittens in the litter?  Are they similarly affected?

5CatMom
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This is from 2005, so the info may have been updated since then:
http://www.vetpathology.org/cgi/content/full/42/6/797
« Last Edit: September 02, 2008, 05:00:28 AM by 5CatMom » Logged
Carol
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« Reply #12 on: September 02, 2008, 04:51:15 AM »

I found this and it does say for further discussion---maybe she will email you?  I can not offer any personal info...just good luck...welcome to itchmo...

http://www.fabcats.org/breeders/infosheets/tritrichomonas.html

For further discussion, contact Danièlle Gunn-Moore: Email: Danielle.Gunn-Moore@ed.ac.uk. Tel: 44 (0)131 650 7650 Fax: 44 (0)131 650 7652. 
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RollingMoss
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« Reply #13 on: September 02, 2008, 05:07:36 AM »

5CatMom,
From what I can gather one other from the litter had diarrhea that sounds similar.  None of them had been tested before they were rehomed. It seems breeders over here are very scared to find out if their cats have TF and would rather not know, its definitly a very hush hush issue.  Which is strange as its not a life-threatening problem really, just a tricky one to treat it seems.  But I fear it will just spread more and more over here if its totally overlooked.

Carol,
Thanks for that info, I did indeed email her yesterday but unfortunatly all correspondance has to be done via a vet (I have my vet onto it already)   Smiley   You see how hard it is?!
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5CatMom
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« Reply #14 on: September 02, 2008, 05:27:59 AM »

The Winn foundation funded a study:

"Determination of in vitro susceptibility of feline Tritrichomonas foetus to nitroimidazoles and novel antimicrobials. Stanley Marks; University of California-Davis; $5,425

Tritrichomonas foetus is a parasite that has been identified as an important cause of diarrhea in domestic cats. Infection with T. foetus is characterized by a waxing and waning large bowel diarrhea that occasionally contains fresh blood and mucus. The prevalence of T. foetus infection at an international cat show was found to be 31% (36 out of 117 cats), with 28 out of 89 catteries affected. Risk factors for protozoal shedding and exacerbation of diarrhea included concurrent infection with Cryptosporidium spp., and cats living in close proximity with one another. There is currently no therapy for elimination of the organism and cats may shed protozoa continually in spite of feces returning to normal consistency. A recent report showed that 57% of cats diagnosed with T. foetus-associated diarrhea were still shedding the organism up to 3 years following diagnosis, and diarrhea persisted for up to 2 years in many cats, despite aggressive antimicrobial administration. Cats infected with T. foetus have failed treatment with recommended and higher dosages of conventional antimicrobial drugs, including metronidazole, fenbendazole, sulfadimethoxine, furazolidone, tylosin, amoxicillin, and paromomycin. The goal of this study is to evaluate the in vitro susceptibility of feline T. foetus strains to conventional and novel antimicrobial agents in an effort to find a safe and efficacious treatment for elimination of the organism. The novel compounds that will be studied have already demonstrated excellent efficacy in vitro against T. foetus strains isolated from cattle."


http://www.winnfelinehealth.org/Pages/Miller_2004_grants_web.pdf



Abstract, results of the study (you have to purchase the entire article):

http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/119819290/abstract?CRETRY=1&SRETRY=0

5CatMom
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