What is Pyothorax?
A chest infection and can be life threatening it is caused by abnormal infection in the thorax not in the lungs themselves versus bacterial pneumonia which is an infection within the lung.
Although there may not be pus in the lungs, but rather in the sterile space surrounding the lungs as more and more pus accumulates in the pleural cavity which is the space surrounding the lungs and heart it will compress the lungs, making breathing more difficult.
Also, the pus can result in septic shock an overwhelming bacterial infection in the bloodstream this more apparent in cats than dogs which is an infection that progresses in the chest cavity this happens more so in multiply cat households rather than one cat household.
Younger cats are more prone than older cats especially if a bite wound to the thorax can result in pyothorax.
So, what are the signs? Lethargy or not moving much, drooling, not eating and anorexia, hiding in unusual places like under beds closets they are warm to touch have fever, a slow heart rate or abnormally elevated heart rate, vomiting, dehydration, an increased respiratory rate 40 breaths per minute or constant panting.
They may seem to be out of shape when walking, hunched over, open mouth breathing difficulty, blue tinged gums stretched neck sitting up to breath, using the abdomen to breath better.
What causes Pyothorax? Usually caused by a bacterial infection in the chest cavity, in most cases pus is present in both sides of the chest although occasionally only one side will be affected this happens with penetrating wounds to the chest wall, wounds to internal structures such as esophagus or windpipe especially following ingestion or inhalation of a foreign object. Migrating foreign body such as a grass seed that entered the body elsewhere or from an infection of the lungs.
If concerned seek medical advice, herbal treatment can help.