Case Description—A 16-week-old 1.5-kg (3.3-lb) sexually intact male Ragdoll kitten that had a 9-week history of marked modified transudate ascites was evaluated. A membranous obstruction of the caudal vena cava at the cranial aspect of the liver was identified via CT angiography.
Clinical Findings—Physical examination findings included a markedly distended abdomen and panting. Testing for circulating FIV antibody and FeLV antigen, a PCR assay for feline coronavirus performed on a sample of peritoneal fluid, and fecal flotation yielded negative results. A diagnosis of Budd-Chiari–like syndrome secondary to a membranous obstruction of the caudal vena cava was made.
Treatment and Outcome—The cat was anesthetized, and the subhepatic portion of the caudal vena cava was identified and accessed via median celiotomy and direct venipuncture. A 6F 8 × 24-mm balloon-expandable nitinol biliary stent was placed across the stenotic area under fluoroscopic guidance. The patient remained free of clinical signs at the last follow-up 13 months following the procedure.
Clinical Relevance—Budd-Chiari–like syndrome is a rare phenomenon in veterinary medicine, and congenital malformations should be considered in young feline patients with ascites. Computed tomography angiography proved to be a helpful adjunctive imaging technique to establish a diagnosis in this case. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first report of successful treatment of a congenital caudal vena cava obstruction by means of stent placement in a juvenile cat.