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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Case Description—A 4-year-old domestic shorthair cat was evaluated for a 1-week history of shifting limb lameness that progressed to tetraparesis.

Clinical Findings—Physical examination revealed generalized muscle atrophy and signs of discomfort when the muscles of the appendicular skeleton were palpated. Neurologic examination revealed diminished myotatic and withdrawal reflexes in all 4 limbs. Results of a CBC indicated mild neutrophilia, and serum biochemical analysis revealed mild hyperalbuminemia and high creatine kinase activity. The cat was anesthetized, and an electromyogram (EMG), CSF sample, and nerve and muscle biopsy specimens were obtained. The EMG revealed positive sharp waves and fibrillation potentials, CSF analysis revealed albuminocytologic dissociation, and histologic examination of muscle and nerve specimens revealed severe myositis and neuritis. Immune-mediated polymyositis and neuritis were suspected.

Treatment and Outcome—With physical therapy and long-term corticosteroid drug treatment, the cat recovered complete motor nerve function.

Clinical Relevance—The severity and rapid progression of clinical signs, combined with the EMG abnormalities and histologic findings, could have led to inappropriate euthanasia for this cat. Veterinarians should be aware that immune-mediated polymyositis and neuritis in cats can have an excellent prognosis with appropriate, long-term treatment.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



To investigate hemodynamic effects of thyroidectomy in horses at rest.


6 healthy aged Quarter Horse mares.


Horses were monitored for 5 months before and 4 weeks after thyroidectomy and for an additional 4 weeks after administration of thyroid hormone supplement (2.5 µg of thyroxine/kg of body weight, PO, q 12 h, and 0.6 µg of triiodothyronine/kg, PO, q 12 h). Responses to thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) were measured before and 4 weeks after thyroidectomy. Other variables monitored daily were resting rectal temperature (T), heart rate (HR), respiratory rate (RR), and body weight (BW), Monthly cardiac output (Q), blood volume (BV), plasma volume (PV), standard electrocardiographic measures, systolic and right ventricular blood pressure, and HR responses were determined after IV administration of isoproterenol and phenylephrine. Variables were analyzed by use of repeated-measures ANOVA.


Complete thyroidectomy was confirmed by minimal response to TSH 4 weeks after surgery. Resting HR, RR, T, Q, and β-adrenergic responsiveness to isoproterenol decreased significantly after thyroidectomy. Resting T, Q, and β-adrenergic responsiveness increased after administration of supplement and was not significantly different from euthyroid values. Blood volume and PV increased significantly after thyroidectomy but did not return to euthyroid values despite administration of supplement. Response to phenylephrine was minimally different between treatments.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Thyroidectomy in horses caused decreased resting HR, RR, T, Q, and isoproterenol responsiveness and increased BV, PV, PQ interval, and QT interval corrected for HR. Some of these surgically induced changes appeared to be partially reversed by administration of thyroid hormone supplement. (Am J Vet Res 1999;60:14–21)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research