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Endogenous lipid pneumonia in cats: 24 cases (1985–1998)

Donna J. JonesVeterinary Medical Teaching Hospital,School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616-8734.

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Carol R. NorrisDepartment of Medicine and Epidemiology,School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616-8734.

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Valerie F. SamiiDepartment of Surgery and Radiology,School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616-8734.

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Stephen M. GriffeyDepartment of Pathology, Microbiology, and Immunology,School of Veterinary Medicine, University of California, Davis, CA 95616-8734.

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Abstract

Objective—To determine clinical signs, radiographic and histologic abnormalities, and concurrent diseases in cats with endogenous lipid pneumonia (EnLP) and to determine the pathologic importance of EnLP in cats.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—24 cats.

Procedure—Medical records of cats in which EnLP was confirmed by histologic examination of necropsy specimens were reviewed. Information collected from the medical records included signalment, body weight, clinical signs, and results of clinicopathologic tests. Thoracic radiographs were reviewed by a radiologist; histologic specimens were reviewed by a pathologist.

Results—All cats had nonspecific clinical abnormalities, such as lethargy, anorexia, or weight loss; 16 had signs of respiratory tract disease. All cats had concurrent systemic diseases, and clinicopathologic abnormalities were reflective of these conditions. Nonspecific abnormalities were detected on thoracic radiographs from 9 of 11 cats. Most cats had macroscopic, multifocal, subpleural lesions; inflammatory infiltrates, cholesterol clefts, and multinucleated giant cells were common. Ten cats had an underlying obstructive pulmonary disease that was the likely cause of EnLP. Lesions of EnLP were not considered to be severe enough or extensive enough to be the cause of death in any of these cats.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—EnLP is an uncommon respiratory tract disorder of cats with no pathognomonic clinical, laboratory, or radiographic findings. Although EnLP was not the cause of death in any of these cats, results of the present study do suggest that EnLP may be a marker for potentially severe underlying obstructive pulmonary disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;216:1437–1440)

Abstract

Objective—To determine clinical signs, radiographic and histologic abnormalities, and concurrent diseases in cats with endogenous lipid pneumonia (EnLP) and to determine the pathologic importance of EnLP in cats.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—24 cats.

Procedure—Medical records of cats in which EnLP was confirmed by histologic examination of necropsy specimens were reviewed. Information collected from the medical records included signalment, body weight, clinical signs, and results of clinicopathologic tests. Thoracic radiographs were reviewed by a radiologist; histologic specimens were reviewed by a pathologist.

Results—All cats had nonspecific clinical abnormalities, such as lethargy, anorexia, or weight loss; 16 had signs of respiratory tract disease. All cats had concurrent systemic diseases, and clinicopathologic abnormalities were reflective of these conditions. Nonspecific abnormalities were detected on thoracic radiographs from 9 of 11 cats. Most cats had macroscopic, multifocal, subpleural lesions; inflammatory infiltrates, cholesterol clefts, and multinucleated giant cells were common. Ten cats had an underlying obstructive pulmonary disease that was the likely cause of EnLP. Lesions of EnLP were not considered to be severe enough or extensive enough to be the cause of death in any of these cats.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—EnLP is an uncommon respiratory tract disorder of cats with no pathognomonic clinical, laboratory, or radiographic findings. Although EnLP was not the cause of death in any of these cats, results of the present study do suggest that EnLP may be a marker for potentially severe underlying obstructive pulmonary disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;216:1437–1440)