Unmasking the prevalence of feline idiopathic cystitis (FIC)

Diagnosing the underlying cause of lower urinary tract signs (LUTS) in cats is often a lengthy process for veterinarians, and a costly source of frustration for pet parents. Multiple studies show that FIC is the most common cause.1

The Prevalence of FIC

A compilation of data reveals the following:

Managing FIC with the right nutrition can lead to significant reduction of recurrent episodes.

Cats with FIC often need a long-term, multimodal management plan, including nutrition and environmental enrichment. A year-long, prospective, randomized, double-masked study reveals that the right nutrition can reduce the recurrence of FIC signs by 89%.2 That may mean better, long-term quality of life for the pet and reduced frustration for the pet parent.

The purpose of this clinical study was to evaluate the efficacy and safety of a therapeutic urinary food, enriched with omega-3 fatty acids (EPA & DHA) and antioxidants, for preventing recurrent

episodes of FIC. Participating cats were offered dry or wet product depending on preference, which was then fed exclusively.

The cats which were fed the nutrition of Hill’s Prescription Diet® c/d® Multicare feline (test food) consistently had a significantly lower proportion of total days with episodes of FIC signs compared with cats fed a control food. This is the first study with grade one evidence to definitively show that foods of different nutritional profiles impact the expression of acute episodes of FIC signs in cats2.

Recurrence of FIC signs has been defined as cats exhibiting two or more LUTS per day. Sixty-four percent of cats exhibited greater than two clinical signs when fed the control food, compared with only 36% of cats fed the test food. Translated into days with at least two clinical LUTS signs, the cats fed the test food experienced only 13 days with recurrence of LUTS vs. 152 days in cats fed the control food. This represents an 89% lower rate of recurrent episodes of FIC signs over 12 months. No significant difference had been found in this study between wet and dry groups.

To find out more about Hill’s® Prescription Diet® c/d® Multicare products – the #1 feline urinary foods recommended by veterinarians3 – and about FIC, visit Hillsvet.com/FIC.

1These data are combined from the following 4 studies:

•Kruger JM, Osborne CA, Goyal SM, et al. Clinical evaluation of cats with lower urinary tract disease. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1991;199:211-216.

•Buffington CA, Chew DJ, Kendall MS, et al. Clinical evaluation of cats with nonobstructive urinary tract diseases. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1997;210:46-50.

•Lekcharosensuk C, Osborne CA, Lulich JP. Epidemiologic study of risk factors for lower urinary tract diseases in cats. J Am Vet Med Assoc 2001;218:1429-1435.

•Gerber B, Boretti FS, Kley S, et al. Evaluation of clinical signs and causes of lower urinary tract disease in European cats. J Small Anim Pract 2005;46:571-577.

2 Kruger, JM, Lulich, JP, Merrils, J, etal., Comparison of foods with differing nutritional profiles for long-term management of acute non-obstructive idiopathic cystitis in cats. J Am Vet Met Assoc., 2015: 247(5): 508-517.

3 2017 Veterinary endorsement study, data on file. 

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