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Cushings Disease

Get the facts on Cushings Disease treatment, diagnosis, staging, causes, types, symptoms. Information and current news about clinical trials and trial-related data, Cushings Disease prevention, screening, research, statistics and other Cushings Disease related topics. We answer all your qestions about Cushings Disease.

Question: What is the life expectancy of a dog diagnosed with Cushing's disease? My 7 year old terrier has recently had blood work done which indicates the possible existance of Cushing's disease. He had elevated ALP of 146 last year and this year it is 176. His thyroid is low at 0.49. The vet thinks he might be pre-cushings, hence the only slightly elevated alp levels. He shows no other symptoms of the disease, no excessive drinking or eating, no incontinence or frequent urination. He is active and playful and has no intolerance to heat. My question is how might the presence of cushing's disease effect his life expectancy?

Answer: Cushing's disease, also known as hyperadrenocorticism Left untreated, Cushing's disease will progress and can lead to life-threatening disorders such as diabetes, congestive heart failure, and liver and kidney failure, and to chronic maladies such as hypothyroidism and infections of the skin, ears, gums, eyes, or bladder. Cushing's disease cannot be cured, but the treatments available can prolong your pet's quality of life and keep him around for years longer. If an adrenal tumor is causing the disease, surgery may be indicated. Either way, it's better to get started on treatment. There are 3 forms of Cushing's Disease: Pituitary-Dependent Cushing's Disease - This is the most common form of Cushing's Disease. It accounts for approximately 85% of cases. It occurs when a very small tumor develops in the pituitary. This tumor sends excessive messages to the adrenal glands to produce and release steroids beyond what the body needs. 2. Adrenocortical Tumors - Tumors of the adrenal glands account for the other 15% of the cases. These are functional masses which are malignant about 50% of the time. The majority of dogs with adrenal tumors are female. 3. Iatrogenic Cushing's Disease - This form of the disease is caused by excessive and/or prolonged steroid administration. The life expectancy of a dog with Cushing's is shorter than for normal dogs. The average survival time after diagnosis is 2 years with the appropriate treatment. Complications that may arise include embolisms, infections, hypertension, heart failure diabetes, pancreatitis, and other illnesses. Owning a pet with Cushing's Disease can be problematic.

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