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Assessment of Sick Cats

Aroch I, Keidar I, Himelstein A et al: Diagnostic and prognostic value of serum creatine-kinase activity in ill cats: a retrospective study of 601 cases, J Feline Med Surg 12:466, 2010.

Serum creatine kinase (CK) activity is commonly used to assess skeletal muscle damage in veterinary medicine. It is included in most serum biochemistry laboratory profiles performed. This was a retrospective study of 601 cases of ill cats aiming to evaluate the prevalence of increased CK activity. Median serum CK was 402 U/L. A previous study concluded that serum CK activity could possibly serve as a useful marker of the nutritional status of ill cats. This study indicated that 10% of the cats had marked increases of serum CK activity that were more than 20-fold above the upper limit of the reference range (URL). They found that cats with increased serum CK activity have a higher proportion of systemic clinical signs, suggesting a more severe disease compared to cats with normal CK activity. Therefore, when serum CK is increased in cats, this should probably be a marker of a more severe disease. Other factors, such as intramuscular injections and excessive restraint, could also contribute to increased CK activity. Serum CK activity is not a good predictor of outcome. Yet, when serum CK activity is extremely increased (7500 U/l or 30-fold the URL), it is associated with a higher mortality and can serve as a negative prognostic indicator. [VT]

Related articles:
Fascetti A, Mauldin G, Mauldin G: Correlation between serum creatinine kinase activities and anorexia in cats, J Vet Intern Med 11:9, 1997.