Epidemiological study of feline idiopathic cystitis in Seoul, South Korea

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)913-921
Journal / PublicationJournal of Feline Medicine and Surgery
Issue number10
Online published2 Oct 2017
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2018


Objectives   The objective of this study was to investigate potential risk factors for the diagnosis of feline idiopathic cystitis (FIC) in cats living in a primarily indoor environment. 
Methods   A case-control study focusing on a cohort of cats attending a first-opinion veterinary practice in Seoul, South Korea, from 2012–2016, was undertaken. Data were collected from cats’ owners by questionnaire and analysed using a multivariable logistic regression analysis. 
Results   Fifty-eight cases of FIC and 281 randomly selected controls were surveyed. Over 90% of the cases and  controls had no access to the outside, and 100% and 91% of the cases and controls, respectively, were neutered. The estimated prevalence of a FIC diagnosis was 1.77% (95% confidence interval [CI] 1.36–2.18). The final logistic regression model included five variables associated with FIC diagnosis. Males had 2.34 times the odds of being diagnosed with FIC compared with females (95% CI 1.18–4.62; P = 0.015). Cats reported as not having vantage points had 4.64 times the odds of a FIC diagnosis compared with those reported as having vantage points (95% CI 2.05–10.49; P <0.001). Cats living in an apartment had 2.53 times the odds of a FIC diagnosis compared with those living in a house (95% CI 1.30–4.93; P = 0.006). Cats cohabiting with other cats were more likely to be diagnosed with FIC than those living alone (odds ratio 3.16, 95% CI 1.61–6.22; P = 0.001). Cats using non-clumping litter had 2.62 times the odds of a FIC diagnosis compared with those using clumping litter (95% CI 1.38–4.96; P = 0.003). 
Conclusions and relevance   This study was conducted in a different epidemiological context from previous studies in that the overwhelming majority of the cats studied were housed entirely indoors. This study identified several significant associations related to a cat’s indoor environment. These findings suggest that the cat’s physical and social environment may play a role in the development of FIC.