-- Robert Preidt
FRIDAY, Feb. 22 (HealthDay News) -- Researchers say they have
found a way to diagnose and treat osteoarthritis in cats.
The researchers, from the University of Montreal, examined 120
cats and found that 39 had osteoarthritis. The team established
methods to evaluate how much arthritis-related pain the cats had
and how the disease affected their movement.
Next, the researchers tested the anti-inflammatory drug
meloxicam and found that it provided various levels of pain relief
depending on dosage levels. Cats that were given the highest dosage
of the drug for four weeks continued to have pain relief for five
weeks after they stopped receiving the drug, which caused no side
Although meloxicam provided pain relief for cats with
osteoarthritis, it did not reduce pain associated with touch, such
as petting, according to the study, which was published Feb. 13 in
Research in Veterinary Science.
Meloxicam is already used to treat other animals. In April, the
European Medicines Agency will consider the use of meloxicam in
More than 80 percent of cats older than 11 years have
osteoarthritis, which frequently affects their elbows, backs, hips
and joints in the hind limbs, according to lead study author Eric
Troncy. Cats with arthritis may become less active, be reluctant to
jump and suffer pain when being petted.
"Despite the fact that cats are the most popular pet in North America, nobody had found a way to easily diagnose and treat cat osteoarthritis," Troncy said in a university news release.
Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis in
The U.S. National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and
Skin Diseases has more about
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