Case Description—A 2-year-old alpaca was evaluated because of acute onset of cervical scoliosis.
Clinical Findings—Physical examination revealed severe scoliosis of the caudal portion of the cervical vertebral column with a C-shaped curvature to the right side. No gait deficits were observed. Cervical radiography confirmed severe curvature of C4 to C6 but did not reveal any bony changes. Cerebrospinal fluid had high total protein concentration and extremely high nucleated cell count with a high proportion of eosinophils, suggesting parasitic infection.
Treatment and Outcome—The alpaca was treated for suspected parelaphostrongylosis with ivermectin, fenbendazole, flunixin, vitamin E, thiamine, physical therapy, and a custom-made neck brace. The alpaca's condition continued to deteriorate, and it developed tetraparesis and ataxia and was euthanized after approximately 1 month. Microscopic evaluation of the cervical spinal cord revealed marked vacuolar changes in the left medial portion of the ventral funiculus, mild lymphoplasmacytic infiltration, and multifocal granulomas. The lesions were continuous from C1 to C7 and were compatible with parasite migration.
Clinical Relevance—To the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of acquired scoliosis in an alpaca, which appears to represent an unusual manifestation of parelaphostrongylosis that was reported in horses.
Objective—To evaluate a modified proportional margins approach to resection of mast cell tumors (MCTs) in dogs.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Animals—40 dogs with subcutaneous and cutaneous MCTs undergoing curative intent surgery.
Procedures—Medical records were searched to identify dogs with a cytologically or histologically confirmed diagnosis of MCT that had not previously been treated surgically and that had undergone full oncological staging. In those dogs, tumors were resected with lateral margins equivalent to the widest measured diameter of the tumor and a minimum depth of 1 well-defined fascial plane deep to the tumor. Surgical margins were evaluated histologically. Cutaneous tumors were graded by use of the Patnaik system and the 2-tier system described by Kiupel et al. The prognosis for subcutaneous tumors was assessed in accordance with published recommendations. Follow-up information on dog health status was obtained through clinical examination, the dog owners, and the referring veterinarians.
Results—The 40 dogs had 47 tumors. Forty-one (87%) tumors were cutaneous, and 6 (13%) were subcutaneous. On the basis of the Patnaik system, 21 (51%) cutaneous tumors were considered grade I, 18 (44%) were considered grade II, and 2 (5%) were considered grade III. On the basis of the Kiupel system, 37 (90%) cutaneous tumors were considered low grade, and 4 (10%) were considered high grade. The prognosis for the 6 subcutaneous tumors was classified as likely resulting in a shorter (2) or longer (4) survival time. Forty tumors were deemed to have been excised with clear margins and 7 with incomplete margins. Local recurrence was not recorded for any dog but was suspected for 1 (2%) tumor, although not confirmed. Interval from tumor excision to follow-up ranged from 30 to 1,140 days (median, 420 days).
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The modified proportional margins system resulted in satisfactory local disease control in dogs with MCTs.