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Objective

To determine the incidence of acute and subacute myocardial infarction on postmortem examination, identify associated diseases, and evaluate clinical or diagnostic indicators of myocardial infarction in dogs and cats.

Design

Retrospective study.

Animals

32 dogs and 5 cats.

Procedure

Records from the necropsy service from December 1985 through August 1994 were searched for dogs and cats in which acute or subacute myocardial infarction was diagnosed on postmortem examination. Clinical records were reviewed for signalment, initial owner complaint, medical history, results of physical examination, electrocardiography, radiography, echocardiography, CBC, serum chemistry analysis, urinalysis, and coagulation profile as well as clinical course, outcome, necropsy findings, and results of histologic evaluation.

Results

Initial owner complaints and physical examination findings were consistent with associated diseases. Electrocardiographic abnormalities in dogs included ventricular tachycardia (16%), atrial fibrillation (9%), and premature ventricular contractions (6.5%). Premature ventricular contractions were noticed in 2 cats. Echocardiography revealed dilated, poorly contractile hearts (n = 3) and thickened mitral valves (2) in dogs, and ventricular hypertrophy (3) in cats. Ninety-seven percent of dogs had infarction of the left ventricle as well as other other portions of the heart. Infarctions in cats were found in all parts of the myocardium including the right ventricle (n = 3), left ventricle (3), and interventricular septum (1).

Clinical Implications

Myocardial infarction is rare in dogs and cats. It is associated with a number of common diseases and may contribute to morbidity and mortality in those dogs and cats that are critically ill. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:1444-1448)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the prevalence of nonneoplastic middle ear disease among cats undergoing necropsy and the prevalence of clinical abnormalities in cats in which nonneoplastic middle ear disease was identified.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—59 cats that underwent necropsy between January 1991 and August 2007.

Procedures—Medical records were searched to identify cats in which nonneoplastic middle ear disease was identified at necropsy. For cats included in the study, data that were recorded included signalment, initial complaint, whether the cat had any clinical signs of middle or external ear disease, whether the cat had upper respiratory tract disease, necropsy diagnosis, gross appearance of the bullae, and reason for euthanasia. Signs of middle ear disease that were considered included unilateral peripheral vestibular disease without motor deficits, Horner syndrome, and facial nerve paralysis.

Results—Of the 3,442 cats that underwent necropsy during the study period, 59 (1.7%) had nonneoplastic middle ear disease. Six of the 59 (10%) cats, including 1 cat that was affected bilaterally, had clinical signs of middle ear disease. Of these, 5 had signs of unilateral peripheral vestibular disease, and 1 had Horner syndrome.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that most cats with nonneoplastic middle ear disease did not have associated clinical signs. Findings may be of clinical relevance for cats in which middle ear disease is identified as an incidental finding during computed tomography or magnetic resonance imaging for unrelated diseases.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To describe clinical and clinicopathologic findings from dogs with histologic pulmonary lesions consistent with human adult respiratory distress syndrome and to identify potential risk factors.

Design

Retrospective study.

Animals

19 dogs with acute respiratory distress.

Procedure

Medical records of dogs were reviewed. Signalment, physical examination and clinicopathologic findings at admission, and thoracic radiographic and necropsy findings were recorded.

Results

The most common clinical sign was dyspnea. Respiratory rate ranged from 36 to 140 breaths/min, and abnormal breathing patterns were detected. Crackles were auscultated in 7 dogs. Severe diffuse interstitial and alveolar infiltrates were observed on thoracic radiography in 9 dogs shortly after arrival and developed later in 4 dogs. Four dogs were leukopenic and neutropenic. Disseminated intravascular coagulation was diagnosed in 2 dogs, and hypoalbuminemia was found in 8 dogs. Respiratory status deteriorated rapidly in all dogs, and 10 dogs were mechanically ventilated. Death was attributed solely to respiratory failure in 8 dogs. In the other 11 dogs, severe lesions in nonpulmonary organs, sepsis, or both may have contributed to death. The most common associated conditions that may have contributed to acute respiratory failure were microbial pneumonia, sepsis, aspiration pneumonia, and shock, with more than 1 factor found in 11 of 19 dogs.

Clinical Implications

The index of suspicion for acute respiratory distress syndrome should be high in dogs with bilateral pulmonary infiltrates and acute respiratory distress that rapidly progresses to failure. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;208:1419-1427)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To characterize respiratory function and treatment in dogs with findings compatible with those of human adult respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS) and to evaluate the application in dogs of clinical criteria for diagnosis of ARDS.

Design

Retrospective review of medical records.

Animals

19 dogs with acute respiratory distress syndrome.

Results

Arterial blood pH was 7.30 ± 0.059 (mean ± SD). Nine dogs had metabolic acidosis. In nonmechanically ventilated dogs, Paco2 was 15.0 to 54.9 mm of Hg. Respiratory acidosis developed in 2 mechanically ventilated dogs. Hypoxemia was observed in 4 of 5 dogs breathing room air. In 4 mechanically ventilated dogs, oxygenation was inadequate, despite use of > 60% inspired O2 and positive end-expiratory pressure in 3 dogs. Alveolar-to-arterial oxygen tension gradients were widened in 4 dogs breathing room air and in 6 dogs ventilated with 100% O2.

Ten dogs were mechanically ventilated; ventilatory rate was 18 to 60 breaths/min. Tidal volume was 12 ± 3.8 ml/kg of body weight in 4 dogs, minute ventilation > 400 ml/kg/min in 2 dogs, and peak airway pressures > 25 cm of H2O in 6 dogs. Positive end-expiratory pressure was used in 8 dogs. Pneumothorax was detected in 5 ventilated dogs.

Human clinical criteria for diagnosis of ARDS were fulfilled in 7 dogs. Fluid treatment consisted of IV crystalloids and synthetic colloids. Drugs most often administered were antibiotics and loop diuretics.

Clinical Implications

Human clinical criteria for identification of ARDS may be helpful in diagnosis of acute respiratory distress syndrome in dogs. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1996;208:1428-1433)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To characterize cranial vena cava thrombosis in dogs with regard to signalment, clinical manifestation, potential inciting causes, treatment, and outcome.

Design

Retrospective study.

Animals

17 dogs with a cranial vena cava thrombus.

Procedure

Medical and necropsy records were reviewed for signalment, potential causes of thrombus formation, diagnosis, clinicopathologic findings, treatment, and outcome.

Results

A signalment predisposition was not found. Ten dogs had cranial vena cava syndrome, and 10 had a pleural effusion. Ten dogs were dyspneic, and 5 had palpable jugular thrombi. Predisposing conditions identified were presumed immune-mediated hematologic disease and corticosteroid administration (6 dogs), sepsis (6), protein-losing nephropathy (2), neoplasia (2), and cardiac disease (1). Central venous catheterization was implicated as a contributing cause. Thrombocytopenia was the most consistent clinicopathologic finding, and ultrasonography was helpful in confirming the diagnosis. Treatment varied, but 15 of the 17 dogs died or were euthanatized within 20 days of clinical manifestation of the thrombus. At necropsy, thrombi were found in other organs, mainly the right atrium, jugular veins, and pulmonary arteries.

Clinical Implications

Prognosis is poor for dogs with cranial vena cava thrombosis associated with clinical signs. Use of central venous catheters should be avoided in dogs with predisposing diseases such as immune-mediated disease, sepsis, protein-losing nephropathy, neoplasia, and cardiac disease. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:220-224)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

SUMMARY

Experimental hypophysectomies were performed in 7 clinically normal dogs, using a new modification of the transsphenoidal approach. This approach facilitated centering of the sphenoid bone trephination and allowed safe exposure of the hypophysis regardless of the size or shape of a dog's skull. Complications did not occur during surgery and all dogs recovered well from surgery. Growth hormone secretory capacity was measured over a 3-month period to assess completeness of hypophysectomies. One dog was euthanatized 2 months after surgery, 4 dogs were euthanatized at 3 months after surgery, and 2 dogs were allowed to survive and their progress was followed for 2.5 years. Soft palate dehiscence and keratoconjunctivitis sicca developed in 2 of the dogs. The technical deficiencies responsible for these complications were corrected shortly after the beginning of the study. In 4 of the 5 necropsied dogs, minute remnants of adenohypophyseal tissue were found in the sellae turcicae. Measurement of in vivo growth hormone secretory capacity revealed that these remnants had an altered stage of functional activity. Although complete hypophysectomy was not achieved consistently, the main technical obstacle of hypophysectomy, the reliable identification and the avoidance of the vascular structures surrounding the hypophysis, has seemingly been overcome. The surgical technique proved to enhance the safety of hypophysectomy, and the procedure can be recommended to treat clinical cases of canine pituitary-dependent hyperadrenocorticism. The clinical significance of potential subtotal hypophysectomy remains yet to be evaluated.

Free access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Objective

To identify risk factors associated with fatal acute pancreatitis in dogs.

Design

Case-control study.

Animals

70 case dogs with clinical evidence and histopathologic confirmation of fatal acute pancreatitis and 104 control dogs that had trauma, underwent necropsy, and did not have histologic evidence of acute pancreatitis.

Procedure

Information on signalment, weight, body condition, medical history, concurrent disease, and results of histopathologic examination was obtained by reviewing medical records. Logistic regression analysis included calculation of univariate and multivariate (adjusted) odds ratios and 95% confidence intervals.

Results and Clinical Implications

Dogs with fatal acute pancreatitis were largely middle- to older-aged dogs. Risk of developing fatal acute pancreatitis was increased by overweight body condition, diabetes mellitus, hyperadrenocorticism, hypothyroidism, prior gastrointestinal tract disease, and epilepsy. Additionally, Yorkshire Terriers were at increased risk, and Labrador Retrievers and Miniature Poodles were at decreased risk, of developing fatal acute pancreatitis. Males and neutered females appeared to have an increased risk of developing fatal acute pancreatitis, compared with sexually intact females. Thrombus formation was more likely in dogs that developed fatal acute pancreatitis than in control dogs. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;214:46–51)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To determine clinical, clinicopathologic, radiographic, ultrasonographic, and coagulation abnormalities in dogs in which acute pancreatitis was fatal.

Design

Retrospective study.

Animals

70 dogs.

Procedure

History, clinical signs, and physical examination findings at the time of initial evaluation at the veterinary teaching hospital; results of pretreatment laboratory tests, abdominal radiography, and ultrasonography; and histologic abnormalities were obtained from medical records.

Results

Clinical signs included anorexia, vomiting, weakness, diarrhea, polyuria and polydipsia, neurologic abnormalities, melena, weight loss, hematemesis, and passage of frank blood in feces. At the time of initial examination at the veterinary teaching hospital, 68 (97%) dogs were dehydrated, 18 (26%) were icteric, 22 (32%) were febrile, 40 (58%) had signs of abdominal pain, and 30 (43%) were classified as overweight or obese. Most dogs had leukocytosis, neutrophilia with a left shift, and thrombocytopenia. Various serum biochemical abnormalities were identified, including hypoglycemia, azotemia, hypercalcemia and other electrolyte abnormalities, hypoalbuminemia, high hepatic and pancreatic enzyme activities, hypercholesterolemia, and lipemia. For 17 of 28 (61 %) dogs, results of coagulation function tests were abnormal. Results of abdominal ultrasonography and radiography were consistent with a diagnosis of acute pancreatitis in 23 of 34 (68%) and 10 of 41 (24%) dogs, respectively. For 2 dogs, results of abdominal ultrasonography were not suggestive of acute pancreatitis, but results of abdominal radiography were.

Clinical Implications

Clinical signs and results of clinicopathologic tests are inconsistent. Abdominal ultrasonography may be valuable in the diagnostic evaluation of dogs suspected to have acute pancreatitis. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;213:665-670)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To characterize concurrent disorders in dogs with diabetes mellitus (DM).

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—221 dogs with DM.

Procedure—Medical records were reviewed, and clinical signs, physical examination findings, and results of clinicopathologic testing, urinalysis, aerobic bacterial culture of urine samples, coagulation testing, endocrine testing, histologic evaluation, diagnostic imaging, and necropsy were recorded.

Results—For most dogs, CBC results were normal. Common serum biochemical abnormalities included hypochloremia (127 dogs, 60%) and high alanine aminotransferase (163, 78%), aspartate aminotransferase (78, 71%), and alkaline phosphatase (188, 90%) activities. Venous pH and serum ionized calcium concentration were measured in 121 and 87 dogs, respectively, and were low in 56 (46%) and 41 (47%) dogs. Lipemia was observed in 92 (42%) dogs. Urine samples from 159 (72%) dogs were submitted for aerobic bacterial culture, and 34 (21%) yielded bacterial growth. Escherichia coli was the most commonly isolated organism. Thirty-six (16%) dogs had dermatitis or otitis. Hyperadrenocorticism was diagnosed in 51 (23%) dogs on the basis of clinical signs and results of a low-dose dexamethasone suppression test (41 dogs), an adrenocorticotropic hormone stimulation test (5), both tests (4), or histologic evaluation of necropsy specimens (1). Acute pancreatitis was diagnosed in 28 (13%) dogs. Eleven (5%) dogs had tumors for which a histologic diagnosis was obtained. Eight (4%) dogs were hypothyroid.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that dogs with diabetes mellitus may have many concurrent disorders. The most commonly identified concurrent disorders included hyperadrenocorticism, urinary tract infection, dermatitis, otitis, acute pancreatitis, neoplasia, and hypothyroidism. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2000;217:1166–1173)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To characterize clinical, clinicopathologic, radiographic, and ultrasonographic findings in cats with histologically confirmed acute necrotizing pancreatitis (ANP) or chronic nonsuppurative pancreatitis (CP) and identify features that may be useful in the antemortem differentiation of these disorders.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—63 cats with histologically confirmed ANP (n = 30) or CP (33).

Procedure—Medical records were reviewed for signalment, clinical signs, concurrent diseases, clinicopathologic findings, and results of radiography and ultrasonography.

Results—Cats in both groups had similar nonspecific clinical signs, physical examination findings, and radiographic and ultrasonographic abnormalities. Abdominal ultrasonographic abnormalities, including hypoechoic pancreas, hyperechoic mesentery, and abdominal effusion, were found in cats in both groups and, therefore, were not specific for ANP. Cats with CP were significantly more likely to have concurrent diseases than were cats with ANP (100 and 83%, respectively). Clinicopathologic abnormalities were similar between groups; however, serum alanine aminotransferase and alkaline phosphatase activities were significantly higher in cats with CP.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that ANP and CP in cats cannot be distinguished from each other solely on the basis of history, physical examination findings, results of clinicopathologic testing, radiographic abnormalities, or ultrasonographic abnormalities. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2003;223:469–474)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association