Objective—To identify predictors of veterinary students and veterinarians having an interest in veterinary public health and epidemiology (PH&E).
Sample Population—Veterinary students enrolled in the College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at Texas A&M University and veterinarians with membership in a Texas veterinary professional organization.
Procedures—2 questionnaires were designed and administered to investigate hypothesized predictors of PH&E interests among veterinary students and veterinarians. Descriptive statistics were calculated for all variables from both questionnaires. Prevalence ratios, 95% confidence intervals, and χ2 tests were used to evaluate bivariate associations between variables and an interest in PH&E. Multivariable logistic regression was used to adjust for the effects of multiple variables on the outcome.
Results—70% (215/305) of students believed that a course in PH&E was necessary, and 46% (140/304) believed that more courses in PH&E would improve the veterinary curriculum. Ninety-nine percent (299/303) of veterinarians believed that a course in PH&E was necessary in the curriculum. Ninety-two percent (272/297) of veterinarians agreed that knowledge related to PH&E was important to perform the functions of their job. History of raising animals and membership in 4-H or Future Farmers of America were significant predictors of veterinary students having an interest in PH&E. Being male and growing up in a rural environment were not significant predictors.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Most veterinary students and veterinarians agreed that knowledge of PH&E is important. Variables identified as associated with an interest in PH&E may be useful for designing mitigation strategies to increase the number of veterinarians entering public health careers.
Objective—To determine whether West Nile virus (WNV) disease hyperendemic foci (hot spots) exist within the horse population in Texas and, if detected, to identify the locations.
Sample Population—Reports of 1,907 horses with WNV disease in Texas from 2002 to 2004.
Procedures—Case data with spatial information from WNV epidemics occurring in 2002 (1,377 horses), 2003 (396 horses), and 2004 (134 horses) were analyzed by use of the spatial scan statistic (Poisson model) and kriging of empirical Bayes smoothed county attack rates to determine locations of horses with WNV disease in which affected horses were consistently (in each of the 3 study years) clustered (hyperendemic foci, or hot spots).
Results—2 WNV hot spots in Texas, an area in northwestern Texas and an area in eastern Texas, were identified with the scan statistic. Risk maps of the WNV epidemics were qualitatively consistent with the hot spots identified.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—WNV hot spots existed within the horse population in Texas (2002 to 2004). Knowledge of disease hot spots allows disease control and prevention programs to be made more efficient through targeted surveillance and education.
Objective—To evaluate the seroprevalence of paratuberculosis by use of 2 commercial ELISAs in association with prevalence of fecal shedding of mycobacteria within beef cattle herds.
Design—Cross-sectional field study.
Animals—Six beef herds (affected herds; 522 cattle) with and 3 geographically matched herds (181 cattle) without high seroprevalence of paratuberculosis.
Procedures—Blood and fecal samples were collected from adult cattle and assessed for serum anti–Mycobacterium avium subsp paratuberculosis (MAP) antibodies with 2 commercial ELISA kits and submitted for bacterial culture for MAP and environmental bacteria (termed environmental mycobacteria) via a radiometric method, respectively. Species of mycobacterial isolates were identified, and sensitivities and specificities of the 2 ELISAs were compared.
Results—Compared with comparison cattle, cattle from affected herds were 9.4 times as likely to have environmental mycobacteria isolated from feces. Among the 6 affected and 3 comparison herds, the proportions of cattle shedding environmental mycobacteria were 0.225 (range, 0.1 to 0.72) and 0.04 (range, 0 to 0.06), respectively. Although relative MAP-detection specificities (compared with bacterial culture of feces) were different between the 2 ELISAs, sensitivities were not. Nine environmental mycobacterial species were iden-tified from participating herds. All affected herds apparently had ≥ 1 bovid infected with MAP, although MAP was not isolated from any cattle in comparison herds.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In beef herds with persistently high rates of false-positive ELISA results, which may be associated with recovery of environmental myco-bacteria from feces, organism detection via bacterial culture of feces or PCR assay should direct paratuberculosis control measures.
Objective—To determine whether body weight, body condition score, or various body dimensions were associated with acute thoracolumbar intervertebral disk extrusion or protrusion and whether any of these factors were associated with severity of clinical signs in Dachshunds.
Design—Cross-sectional clinical study.
Animals—75 Dachshunds with (n = 39) or without (36) acute thoracolumbar intervertebral disk extrusion or protrusion.
Procedures—Signalment, various body measurements, body weight, body condition score, and spinal cord injury grade were recorded at the time of initial examination.
Results—Mean T1-S1 distance and median tuber calcaneus–to–patellar tendon (TC-PT) distance were significantly shorter in affected than in unaffected dogs. A 1-cm decrease in T1-S1 distance was associated with a 2.1-times greater odds of being affected, and a 1-cm decrease in TC-PT distance was associated with an 11.1-times greater odds of being affected. Results of multivariable logistic regression also indicated that affected dogs were taller at the withers and had a larger pelvic circumference than unaffected dogs, after adjusting for other body measurements. Results of ordinal logistic regression indicated that longer T1-S1 distance, taller height at the withers, and smaller pelvic circumference were associated with more severe spinal cord injury.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that certain body dimensions may be associated with acute thoracolumbar intervertebral disk extrusion or protrusion in Dachshunds and, in affected dogs, with severity of neurologic dysfunction.
Objective—To estimate associations between dietary factors and pancreatitis in dogs.
Design—Retrospective case-control study.
Animals—198 dogs with a clinical diagnosis of pancreatitis and 187 control dogs with a diagnosis of renal failure without clinical evidence of pancreatitis.
Procedures—Information on signalment, weight, body condition, dietary intake, medical history, diagnostic tests performed, concurrent diseases, treatments, duration of hospitalization, and discharge status was extracted from medical records. Information on dietary intake, signalment, weight, and medical, surgical, and environmental history was collected through a telephone questionnaire. Logistic regression was used to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals.
Results—On the basis of information extracted from the medical record, ingesting unusual food items (OR, 4.3) increased the odds of pancreatitis. On the basis of information gathered through the telephone questionnaire, ingesting unusual food items (OR, 6.1), ingesting table scraps the week before diagnosis (OR, 2.2) or throughout life (OR, 2.2), and getting into the trash (OR, 13.2) increased the odds of pancreatitis. Multivariable modeling indicated that reporting exposure to ≥ 1 dietary factor during the telephone questionnaire (OR, 2.6), being overweight (OR, 1.3) or neutered (OR, 3.6), previous surgery other than neutering (OR, 21.1), and the interaction between neuter status and previous surgery other than neutering (OR, 0.1) were associated with the odds of pancreatitis.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that dietary factors, being neutered, and previous surgery other than neutering increased the odds of pancreatitis in dogs.
Objective—To determine risk factors for Clostridium
piliforme infection in neonatal foals on a Thoroughbred
breeding farm in California.
Design—Case-control and retrospective cohort studies.
Animals—322 neonatal Thoroughbred foals either
born on the study farm or born elsewhere but traveled
to the farm with their dam during the 1998,
1999, and 2000 breeding seasons.
Procedure—Mare and foal records from 1998, 1999,
and 2000 were examined, using case-control design
methods to determine variables associated with
increased risk of C piliforme infection in foals.
Important risk factors identified in the case-control
study were then reevaluated by use of a retrospective
cohort design, using data from all neonatal foals
present on the farm during the 3-year study period.
Results—Foals born between March 13 and April 13
were 7.2 times as likely to develop C piliforme infection
as were those born at any other time of the foaling
season. Foals of nonresident (visiting) mares were
3.4 times as likely to develop disease as were foals
born to mares that were permanent residents of the
study farm. Foals of mares < 6 years of age were 2.9
times as likely to develop disease as were foals born
to older mares.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of
this research can be used to better understand the
epidemiologic factors of C piliforme infection in horses.
High-risk foals can be closely monitored to aid in
early diagnosis and treatment, resulting in the best
possible clinical outcome for affected individuals.
(J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002;220:785–790)
OBJECTIVE To characterize and compare MRI susceptibility artifacts related to titanium and stainless steel monocortical screws in the cervical vertebrae and spinal cord of canine cadavers.
SAMPLE 12 canine cadavers.
PROCEDURES Cervical vertebrae (C4 and C5) were surgically stabilized with titanium or stainless steel monocortical screws and polymethylmethacrylate. Routine T1-weighted, T2-weighted, and short tau inversion recovery sequences were performed at 3.0 T. Magnetic susceptibility artifacts in 20 regions of interest (ROIs) across 4 contiguous vertebrae (C3 through C6) were scored by use of an established scoring system.
RESULTS Artifact scores for stainless steel screws were significantly greater than scores for titanium screws at 18 of 20 ROIs. Artifact scores for titanium screws were significantly higher for spinal cord ROIs within the implanted vertebrae. Artifact scores for stainless steel screws at C3 were significantly less than at the other 3 cervical vertebrae.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Evaluation of routine MRI sequences obtained at 3.0 T revealed that susceptibility artifacts related to titanium monocortical screws were considered mild and should not hinder the overall clinical assessment of the cervical vertebrae and spinal cord. However, mild focal artifacts may obscure small portions of the spinal cord or intervertebral discs immediately adjacent to titanium screws. Severe artifacts related to stainless steel screws were more likely to result in routine MRI sequences being nondiagnostic; however, artifacts may be mitigated by implant positioning.
OBJECTIVE To estimate the left atrium–to–aorta ratio (LA:Ao) and establish 95% prediction intervals for left ventricular M-mode transthoracic echocardiographic measurements in clinically normal adult Dachshunds.
ANIMALS 40 healthy Dachshunds.
PROCEDURES For each dog, 3 standard 2-D echocardiographic methods (diameter, circumference, and cross-sectional area) were used to measure the left atrium and aorta and calculate the LA:Ao from right parasternal short axis (RPSA) images obtained at the level of the aortic valve cusps. Left ventricular M-mode measurements were acquired from RPSA images obtained at the chordal level immediately below the mitral valve. Descriptive data were generated, and the 95% prediction intervals were calculated by use of an allometric scaling equation and linear regression and compared with those calculated on the basis of data obtained from dogs of multiple breeds in a previous study.
RESULTS The mean (SD) LA:Ao was 1.40 (0.13), 2.09 (0.17), and 2.85 (0.48) for the diameter, circumference, and cross-sectional area methods, respectively. The 95% prediction intervals for the left ventricular M-mode measurements determined by an allometric scaling equation on the basis of Dachshund-specific data were narrower than those determined on the basis of data obtained from dogs of multiple breeds. For that allometric equation, scaling exponents on the basis of Dachshund-specific data ranged from 0.129 to 0.397 and did not absolutely conform to the presumed index for linear measurements (ie, body weight0.333).
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE The LA:Aos and 95% prediction intervals calculated in this study can be used as preliminary guidelines for echocardiographic measurements of clinically normal Dachshunds.
Objective—To evaluate the association between spondylosis deformans and clinical signs of intervertebral disk disease (IVDD) in dogs.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Procedure—Records of 172 dogs with clinical signs of IVDD and 38 dogs with other neurologic disorders were reviewed. Signalment, sites of spondylosis, severity of associated osteophytosis, type of disk herniation, and duration of signs were recorded.
Results—Dogs with IVDD had significantly fewer sites of involvement and lower grades of spondylosis deformans, compared with those in the non-IVDD group. When groups were adjusted for age and weight via multivariate linear regression, there were no differences in severity of osteophytosis or number of affected sites. Dogs with type II disk disease had higher numbers of affected sites and more severe changes, compared with dogs with type I disk herniation. There was no difference between groups in the rate at which IVDD was diagnosed at sites of spondylosis, compared with the rate at which IVDD was diagnosed in unaffected disk spaces. Areas of spondylosis were closer to sites of IVDD that elicited clinical signs than to randomly chosen intervertebral spaces, and distances between sites of spondylosis and sites of IVDD had a bimodal appearance.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—An association may exist between radiographically apparent spondylosis and type II disk disease; type I disk disease was not associated with spondylosis. Spondylosis in radiographs of dogs with suspected type I disk disease is not clinically important. Spatial associations among sites of spondylosis and sites of IVDD may be coincidental or associated with vertebral column biomechanics.
OBJECTIVE To characterize the extent and location of atelectasis in healthy anesthetized dogs positioned in lateral recumbency and to determine whether repositioning dogs in sternal recumbency would resolve atelectasis.
ANIMALS 6 healthy adult Beagles.
PROCEDURES Each dog was anesthetized and underwent a CT examination twice with a 2-week interval between examinations. Once anesthetized, each dog was positioned in sternal recumbency, and a breath-hold helical transverse thoracic CT scan was acquired. The dog was then positioned in lateral recumbency for 30 minutes, and images were obtained at 5 preselected sites at 3, 8, 13, 20, and 30 minutes after repositioning (phase 1). Then, the dog was repositioned in sternal recumbency, and CT images were obtained at the 5 preselected sites at 5, 10, and 20 minutes after repositioning (phase 2). The protocol for the second examination was the same as the first except the dog was positioned in the opposite lateral recumbency during phase 1. The attenuation and cross-sectional area of the lung lobes at the preselected sites were measured and compared over time.
RESULTS Lateral recumbency did not cause atelectasis in any of the dogs. Patchy areas of abnormally increased attenuation were infrequently detected in the left cranial lung lobe when dogs were positioned in left lateral recumbency, and those areas failed to resolve when dogs were positioned in sternal recumbency.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that the extent of lung attenuation changes was minimal in healthy anesthetized Beagles positioned in lateral recumbency and should not preclude CT examination.