Objective—To determine effects of athletic conditioning
on thyroid hormone concentrations in a population
of healthy sled dogs.
Animals—19 healthy adult sled dogs.
Procedure—Serum concentrations of thyroxine (T4),
triiodothyronine (T3), thyroid-stimulating hormone
(TSH), free T4 (fT4), free T3 (fT3), and autoantibodies
directed against T3, T4, and thyroglobulin were measured
in sled dogs that were not in training (ie, nonracing
season) and again after dogs had been training
at maximum athletic potential for 4 months.
Results—Analysis revealed significant decreases in
T4 and fT4 concentrations and a significant increase in
TSH concentration for dogs in the peak training state,
compared with concentrations for dogs in the
untrained state. Serum concentrations of T4 and fT4
were less than established reference ranges during
the peak training state for 11 of 19 and 8 of 19 dogs,
respectively; fT4 concentration was greater than the
established reference range in 9 of 19 dogs in the
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Decreased
total T4 and fT4 concentrations and increased serum
concentrations of TSH were consistently measured
during the peak training state in healthy sled dogs,
compared with concentrations determined during the
untrained state. Although thyroid hormone concentrations
remained within the established reference
ranges in many of the dogs, values that were outside
the reference range in some dogs could potentially
lead to an incorrect assessment of thyroid status.
Endurance training has a profound impact on the thyroid
hormone concentrations of competitive sled
dogs. ( Am J Vet Res 2004;65:333–337)
Case Description—A 4-year-old nulliparous sexually intact female chinchilla (Chinchilla lanigera) was evaluated because of a 2-month history of blood being sporadically observed in its cage.
Clinical Findings—Results of physical examination of the chinchilla were unremarkable except for the presence of blood-stained fur around the perineum. There were no external lesions to account for the bleeding. Findings on urinalysis, bacteriologic culture of urine, and whole-body radiography were unremarkable. The chinchilla's littermate had been evaluated because of similar clinical signs 2 years earlier, and these signs resolved following ovariohysterectomy.
Treatment and Outcome—Ovariohysterectomy was performed, and gross changes were not observed in the reproductive tract. However, microscopic examination revealed multifocal cystic dilation of the endometrial glands, foci of microhemorrhage, and chronic suppurative inflammation consistent with a final diagnosis of cystic endometrial hyperplasia and chronic endometritis. Clinical signs did not recur.
Clinical Relevance—Cystic endometrial hyperplasia has been documented in a variety of animals, but to the authors' knowledge, this was the first reported case in a chinchilla. Cystic endometrial hyperplasia and chronic endometritis should be considered as a differential diagnosis in an adult sexually intact female chinchilla with a history of suspected hemorrhagic vaginal discharge, suspected hematuria, or hemorrhage from an unknown source.
To describe the radiation safety behaviors of veterinary specialists performing small animal fluoroscopic procedures and examine potential risk factors for these behaviors, including knowledge of radiation risk and training regarding machine operating parameters.
197 veterinary specialists and residents in training.
An electronic questionnaire was distributed to members of the American Colleges of Veterinary Internal Medicine (subspecialties of cardiology and small animal internal medicine), Veterinary Radiology, and Veterinary Surgery.
The overall survey response rate was 6% (240/4,274 email recipients). Of the 240 respondents, 197 (82%) had operated an x-ray unit for a small animal fluoroscopic procedure in the preceding year and fully completed the questionnaire. More than 95% of respondents believed that radiation causes cancer, yet approximately 60% of respondents never wore hand or eye protection during fluoroscopic procedures, and 28% never adjusted the fluoroscopy machine operating parameters for the purpose of reducing their radiation dose. The most common reasons for not wearing eye shielding included no requirement to wear eyeglasses, poor fit, discomfort, and interference of eyeglasses with task performance. Respondents who had received training regarding machine operating parameters adjusted those parameters to reduce their radiation dose during procedures significantly more frequently than did respondents who had not received training.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
On the basis of the self-reported suboptimal radiation safety practices among veterinary fluoroscopy users, we recommend formal incorporation of radiation safety education into residency training programs. All fluoros-copy machine operators should be trained regarding the machine operating parameters that can be adjusted to reduce occupational radiation exposure.