Is it normal for a vet to do surgery on a cat who is throwing up when nothing can be found in the stomach X-ray?

My cat is three years old and has been throwing up shortly after eating for the last three days. I just moved 12 hours away two weeks ago, but he acted fine initially after the move. I took him to the vet today and after stomach x-rays that found nothing, blood work that found nothing, and several other tests, the vet is considering doing surgery to remove a foreign object that he believes is causing the problem. The vet gave my cat a shot of a stomach calming medicine and a bland moist cat food and wants me to observe him for twenty four hours. If he does not improve by tomorrow he wants to discuss further measures possibly including surgery. I feel like the vet is just looking for something to charge me for when my cat just has a sensitive stomach, but I don't want my cat to suffer because I won't listen to the vet. What should I do if he does not improve by tomorrow?

Asked by Member 871031 on Aug 25th 2009 Tagged food, foreignobjects, surgery in Swallowing Foreign Objects
Report this question Get this question's RSS feed Send this question to a friend


  • Cast your vote for which answer you think is best!


Izadore (Izzie)

Before subjecting your cat to surgery, you are fully entitled to a second opinion from another vet's office. I would definitely take advantage of this right. When my daughter's cat swallowed a puzzle piece, a small, square object definitely showed up on the x-ray and it was confirmed by the specialist at the referral clinic we were sent to for a second opinion. When you return to this vet's office after the 24 hous for the consultation, take a pen and paper along. Write down any questions you have for this vet and make note of the answers. It will aid you in remembering what this vet said and also in explaining to another vet what's been done if you do seek out another opinion. I don't understand though, if the x-rays showed nothing, why does the vet feel a foreign object is causing the problem? Wouldn't this show up on the x-ray?

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 8/25/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer


I agree with Izzie that a second opinion is a must. I rotate among three vets, all of whom are good in some areas but not so good in others. And when Harvey had gum problems as a kitten, I took him to eight vets, none of whom agreed as to what was wrong with him; one referred me to a woman who is probably the only animal dentist in Tokyo, and the problem was solved. Granted, going to eight vets was sort of overkill, but a second opinion is always a good idea if you have any doubts. And if you feel you can't really trust your vet, maybe finding another vet who you CAN trust would be a good idea.

Harvey answered on 8/25/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer

Minuit AKA Miss Meany

Your the only one you can decide whether or not surgery is needed or necessary for your cat.
Yes a second opinion is a great idea if for one you don't trust your vet or for two, it's a costly surgery.
I do know some things will not show up on a x-ray. A hairball blockage is a good possibility and this will not show up. Some plastics, rubbers and wood are other items that may not always show up on a x-ray.
Blood work will come back fine as well when it comes to blockages.
I hope your cat improves within 24 hours and your not faced with such a difficult decision.
All my best.

Minuit AKA Miss Meany answered on 8/25/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer