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To evaluate the feasibility of CT lymphangiography via intrametatarsal pad injection in cats with chylothorax.


7 client-owned cats.


This was a multicenter, retrospective, descriptive study. Medical records and imaging data from 4 veterinary hospitals were reviewed to identify cats with chylothorax that had undergone intrametatarsal pad injection via CT lymphangiography. In total, 7 client-owned cats were included in the study. Signalment, history, image findings, and follow-up data were recorded. Descriptive statistics were used to analyze the success rate of thoracic duct (TD) enhancement and describe relevant clinical findings.


Enhancement of TDs was successful in 6 of the 7 cats within 5 to 15 minutes after initiating intrametatarsal pad injection under general anesthesia. Successful migration of contrast medium into the lymphatic vessels cranial to the popliteal lymph nodes was observed in all cats within 5 minutes after injection. The recommended dose of contrast medium to achieve TD enhancement was 1 mL/kg (0.5 mL/kg/pad; concentration, 350 mg of iodine/kg). Only 1 cat had mild swelling of the paws after the procedure, and it recovered quickly without pain medication; no cats experienced lameness. Similar to dogs and unlike in previously published reports, 72% of TD branches were located in the right hemithorax.


CT lymphangiography via intrametatarsal pad injection is a feasible and safe procedure for cats with chylothorax. This technique provides detailed information regarding the unique TD anatomy and cisterna chyli location. It also contributes to surgical planning.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research