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  • Author or Editor: E. Scott Weber III x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To calculate the prevalence of urolithiasis in client-owned chelonians examined at a veterinary teaching hospital and to describe the clinical signs, diagnosis, and treatment of urolithiasis in chelonians.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—40 client-owned turtles and tortoises with urolithiasis.

Procedures—The medical record database of a veterinary teaching hospital was searched from 1987 through 2012 for records of client-owned chelonians with urolithiasis. The prevalence of urolithiasis was calculated for client-owned chelonians examined at the hospital. Signalment and physical examination, hematologic, biochemical, urinalysis, diagnostic imaging, treatment, and necropsy results were described.

Results—The mean prevalence of urolithiasis in client-owned chelonians for the study period was 5.1 cases/100 client-owned chelonians examined. Thirty-one of the 40 chelonians were desert tortoises. Only 5 of 40 chelonians had physical examination abnormalities associated with the urogenital tract. Surgery was performed on 17 chelonians; 5 developed postoperative complications, and 4 of those died. Necropsy was performed on 18 chelonians, and urolithiasis contributed to the decision to euthanize or was the cause of death for 9. Uroliths from 13 chelonians were analyzed, and all were composed of 100% urate.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicated chelonians with urolithiasis have various clinical signs and physical examination findings that may or may not be associated with the urinary tract. Hematologic, biochemical, and urinalysis findings were nonspecific for diagnosis of urolithiasis. Many chelonians died or were euthanized as a consequence of urolithiasis, which suggested the disease should be identified early and appropriately treated.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To document hematologic and plasma biochemical values for a large number of cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles at the beginning of rehabilitation, to investigate differences in hematologic and plasma biochemical values of turtles that ultimately survived versus those that died, and to compare values of survivors during convalescence with initial values obtained at the time of admission.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—176 stranded, cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles hospitalized between 2001 and 2005.

Procedures—Hematologic and plasma biochemical values obtained at the time of admission were compared retrospectively for turtles that died versus turtles that survived. Initial results for survivors were compared with convalescent results obtained later in rehabilitation.

Results—Turtles that died had significantly greater plasma concentrations of sodium, chloride, potassium, calcium, phosphorus, and uric acid than did turtles that survived. For survivors, values obtained during convalescence for BUN concentration and plasma calcium concentration were significantly greater than initial values obtained at the time of admission, whereas values obtained during convalescence for glucose, sodium, and uric acid concentrations were significantly lower than initial values.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles may be affected by electrolyte derangements, dehydration, and decreased renal function. Hematologic and plasma biochemical evaluation of such turtles provided useful clinical and prognostic information during the rehabilitation process.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the long-term protective immunity of a cyprinid herpesvirus 3 (CyHV3) vaccine in naïve koi (Cyprinus carpio koi).

Animals—72 koi.

Procedures—Vaccinated koi (n = 36) and unvaccinated control koi (36) were challenge exposed to a wild-type CyHV3 strain (KHVp8 F98-50) 13 months after vaccination.

Results—The CyHV3 vaccine provided substantial protective immunity against challenge exposure. The proportional mortality rate was less in vaccinated koi (13/36 [36%]) than in unvaccinated koi (36/36 [100%]). For koi that died during the experiment, mean survival time was significantly greater in vaccinated than in unvaccinated fish (17 vs 10 days).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The CyHV3 vaccine provided substantial protective immunity against challenge exposure with CyHV3 13 months after vaccination. This provided evidence that koi can be vaccinated annually with the CyHV3 vaccine to significantly reduce mortality and morbidity rates associated with CyHV3 infection.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To investigate safety and efficacy of a cyprinid herpesvirus type 3 (CyHV3) modified-live virus vaccine for the prevention of koi herpesvirus disease (KHVd).

Animals—420 healthy koi (Cyprinus carpio koi).

Procedures—Fish were vaccinated with a 1× dose or 10× overdose of CyHV3 modified-live virus vaccine or a placebo through bath exposure in tanks at 22°C. Horizontal transmission of vaccine virus was evaluated by commingling unvaccinated and vaccinated fish. Efficacy was evaluated by challenge exposure of vaccinated and naïve fish to a wild-type virus. Fish that died were submitted for quantitative PCR assay for CyHV3 and histologic evaluation.

Results—The CyHV3 vaccine was safe and efficacious, even at a 10× overdose. Vaccine-associated mortality rate was inversely associated with body weight, with a cumulative mortality rate of 9.4% (18/192) in fish weighing ≤ 87 g and no deaths in fish weighing > 87 g (0/48). Horizontal transfer of vaccine virus from vaccinates to naïve fish was negligible. For efficacy, the vaccine provided a significant reduction in mortality rate after challenge exposure to a wild-type virus, with a prevented fraction of 0.83 versus the placebo control fish.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—KHVd is highly contagious and commonly leads to deaths in 80% to 100% of exposed fish, representing a major threat to koi and common carp populations throughout the world. The CyHV3 modified-live virus vaccine had a favorable safety profile and was an effective vaccine for the control of KHVd in koi weighing > 87 g.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the prevalence, distribution, and progression of radiographic abnormalities in the lungs of cold-stunned Kemp's ridley sea turtles (Lepidochelys kempii) and associations between these abnormalities and body weight, carapace length, and hematologic and plasma biochemical variables.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—89 cold-stunned juvenile Kemp's ridley sea turtles.

Procedures—Medical records were reviewed. Dorsoventral and horizontal beam craniocaudal radiographs were evaluated for the presence, distribution, and progression of lung abnormalities. Turtles were categorized as having radiographically normal or abnormal lungs; those with abnormalities detected were further categorized according to the distribution of abnormalities (left lung, right lung, or both affected). Body weight, carapace length, and hematologic and plasma biochemical data were compared among categories.

Results—48 of 89 (54%) turtles had radiographic abnormalities of the lungs. Unilateral abnormalities of the right or left lung were detected in 14 (16%) and 2 (2%), respectively; both lungs were affected in 32 (36%). Prevalence of unilateral abnormalities was significantly greater for the right lung than for the left lung. Evaluation of follow-up radiographs indicated clinical improvement over time for most (18/31 [58%]) turtles. Prevalence of bilateral radiographic abnormalities was positively correlated with body weight and carapace length. There was no significant association between radiographic category and hematologic or plasma biochemical variables.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Radiographic abnormalities of the lungs were commonly detected in cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles. Results of this study may aid clinicians in developing effective diagnostic and treatment plans for these patients.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate clinical data for cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles (Lepidochelys kempii) with Enterococcus spp infections during rehabilitation.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—50 stranded cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles hospitalized between 2006 and 2012.

Procedures—Medical records for turtles from which Enterococcus spp were isolated were reviewed retrospectively, and clinical data, including morphometric data, body temperature at admission, physical examination findings, antimicrobial medication history, history of medications administered IV, environmental data, day of diagnosis, clinical signs at diagnosis, microbiological testing results, sources of positive culture results, hematologic and plasma biochemical data, cytologic and histopathologic results, radiographic findings, antimicrobial treatments, time to first negative culture result, treatment duration, results of subsequent cultures, and case outcome, were collated and analyzed.

ResultsEnterococcus spp were isolated from bacteriologic cultures of blood, bone, joint, and respiratory tract samples and a skin lesion, with supporting evidence of infection provided by histopathologic, cytologic, and radiographic data. Positive culture results were associated with clinical problems such as lethargy, anorexia, and lameness. Most (34/43 [79%]) turtles for which an antemortem diagnosis was made survived with treatment and were released into the wild.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cold-stunned Kemp's ridley turtles may be affected by serious Enterococcus spp infections during rehabilitation. Recognition and treatment of these infections are important for successful rehabilitation.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association