To describe the clinical disease, diagnostic findings, medical management, and outcome in dogs with alveolar echinococcosis (AE).
4 dogs with naturally occurring AE.
Medical records were retrospectively reviewed from 2020 to 2022 to identify dogs diagnosed with AE. Signalment, case history, clinical signs, imaging and pathological laboratory findings, treatment, and clinical outcome were reported.
All dogs developed systemic clinical illness and weight loss. Abdominal ultrasonography revealed multifocal to coalescent cystic masses of variable size distributed throughout the liver in all cases. Evaluation of aspirated hepatic cyst contents included membranous parasite structures and calcareous corpuscles. Echinococcus multilocularis was confirmed via PCR from hepatic cyst fluid in 3 of 4 cases. Treatment included systemic benzimidazole and praziquantel administration, 1 or more instances of ultrasound-guided cyst drainage in all cases, with ethanol ablation (percutaneous aspiration-injection-reaspiration) in 2 cases, and surgical resection in 1 case. Two of 4 dogs were euthanized within 5 months of diagnosis. One of these dogs was necropsied and had nearly complete obliteration of the hepatic parenchyma by multilocular cystic masses. One dog is still alive, and 1 dog has been lost to follow-up.
This series of cases highlighted the diagnostic findings and therapeutic intervention in 4 dogs with AE. This was the first report of medical management incorporating the percutaneous aspiration-injection-reaspiration method used in humans. Reports of canine AE are rare in the US, so this series serves to help raise awareness of hepatic AE in the northwestern US.
Case Description—An 8-year-old 38-kg (84-lb) castrated male German Shepherd Dog cross was evaluated because of respiratory distress secondary to pneumothorax (detected radio-graphically prior to referral).
Clinical Findings—CT of the thorax confirmed the presence of pneumothorax and revealed pulmonary blebs without evidence of infiltrative pulmonary changes. A tentative diagnosis of primary spontaneous pneumothorax was made.
Treatment and Outcome—Exploratory median sternotomy revealed emphysematous changes along the margins of all lung lobes, with the ventral margins of the left cranial, right cranial, and right middle lung lobes most affected. Partial lobectomies of the ventral aspects of these lobes were performed. Histologic examination of tissue samples from the lung lobes revealed diffuse smooth muscle hypertrophy of the terminal and respiratory bronchioles with moderate numbers of peribronchiolar eosinophils. Mucus plugs and mucous cell metaplasia within the airway epithelium were also evident. After surgery, clinical signs resolved and the dog was discharged from the hospital 2 days later. Eight months after surgery, the dog developed a mild cough, and treatment with prednisolone (tapering dosage starting at 0.5 mg/kg [0.023 mg/lb], PO, q 12 h) was initiated. Dosage reduction resulted in recurrence of coughing; however, with continued prednisolone treatment at a dosage of 0.5 mg/kg, PO, once daily, the dog was not coughing at 10 months after surgery.
Clinical Relevance—Reactive bronchopneumopathy should be included as a differential diagnosis for spontaneous pneumothorax in dogs.
Objective—To measure 11-dehydro-thromboxane B2 (11-dTXB2) in urine of healthy control dogs, dogs undergoing ovariohysterectomy, and dogs with gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) and assess the relationship between urinary 11-dTXB2 concentrations in dogs with GDV and postoperative outcomes.
Sample Population—Urine samples from 15 nonsurgical control dogs, 12 surgical control dogs, and 32 dogs with GVD.
Procedure—Urine samples were obtained from healthy pet dogs (ie, nonsurgical control dogs), dogs undergoing ovariohysterectomy at anesthetic induction and 1 hour following surgery (ie, surgical control dogs), and dogs with GDV at hospital admission and 1 hour following surgical derotation of the stomach (ie, GDV dogs). Urinary 11-dTXB2 concentrations were determined with an ELISA and normalized to urinary creatinine (Cr) concentrations by calculation of the 11-dTXB2 -to-Cr ratio. Differences in median 11-dTXB2 -to-Cr ratios among dogs and before and after surgery were analyzed.
Results—Urinary 11-dTXB2-to-Cr ratios did not differ between nonsurgical control dogs and surgical control dogs before or after surgery. Urinary 11-dTXB2-to-Cr ratios were significantly higher in GDV dogs at the time of hospital admission and 1 hour after surgery, compared with those of nonsurgical control dogs. Postoperative urine samples from GDV dogs had significantly higher 11-dTXB2-to-Cr ratios than postoperative urine samples from surgical control dogs. Median urinary 11-dTXB2-to-Cr ratios increased significantly in GDV dogs that developed postoperative complications.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Urinary 11-dTXB2 concentration is increased in GDV dogs at the time of hospital admission and after surgical derotation of the stomach, compared with that of healthy dogs. An increased urinary 11-dTXB2-to-Cr ratio following surgery is associated with an increased incidence of postoperative complications in dogs with GDV.
Objective—To determine whether abnormal laxity of hip joints of canine pups with genetic predisposition to hip dysplasia (HD+) is related to ingestion of milk-borne hormones.
Animals—7 female Labrador Retrievers with HD+ and 8 with low predisposition to hip dysplasia (HD–) and their offspring.
Procedures—Immunoactive relaxin, estrogen, and estrogen precursor concentrations in milk of HD+ lactating bitches and in serum of their pups were compared with those of HD– bitches and pups. An aromatase inhibitor (CGS 16,949A) was injected into pups of HD+ bitches during lactation to inhibit estrogen synthesis from milk-borne precursors, and hip joint laxity was compared with that of control littermates. Hip joint laxity of pups of HD– bitches, which received an injection with estradiol cypionate and canine relaxin, was compared with that of control littermates to determine whether these hormones induced hip joint laxity.
Results—High concentrations of estrogens and relaxin were found in milk of HD+ and HD– bitches throughout lactation. Serum concentrations of milk-derived relaxin and total estrogens were similar in all pups, but estradiol-17B was detected only in pups of HD+ bitches. Hip joint laxity was reduced in pups that received CGS 16,949A. Hip joint laxity was increased in pups of HD– bitches that received estradiol cypionate and relaxin.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Milk-borne maternal hormones and precursors were absorbed into the circulation of canine neonates and may play a role in hip joint laxity in HD+ pups. Phenotypic expression of hip dysplasia may therefore be preventable by antihormone treatment.