Case Description—A 0.65-kg (1.43-lb) 24-month-old sexually intact male albino pet rat was examined because of a 3-week history of hypodipsia, apparent blindness, and sudden change in behavior.
Clinical Findings—The rat was able to move around its cage but appeared unaware of its surroundings, was visually unresponsive, and seemed unusually aggressive. The rat's hind limbs appeared mildly paretic, and it had sporadic difficulty placing its hind limbs on a flat surface. Given the rat's age, history, and physical examination findings, the primary differential diagnosis was a pituitary tumor. Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) of the rat's brain was performed and revealed a large pituitary mass, which was indicative of a tumor.
Treatment and Outcome—Cabergoline (0.6 mg/kg [0.27 mg/lb], PO, q 72 h) was administered. On follow-up MRI 2 months later, the pituitary mass had substantially decreased in size. For 6 months following the second MRI study, the rat continued to receive the same dosage of cabergoline and had no clinical signs of disease or unusual behavior. However, at 8.5 months after the start of the treatment, the rat was in poor condition and had clinical signs similar to those initially. A third MRI study was performed and revealed substantial regrowth of the mass. The rat was euthanized and a necropsy was performed; a histopathologic diagnosis of pituitary adenoma was made.
Clinical Relevance—Pituitary adenomas have long been recognized as a common finding in geriatric rats (> 18 months old). Affected rats may respond favorably to oral administration of cabergoline.
Case Description—3 unrelated, densely populated, dynamic ferret populations with severe outbreaks of enteric coccidiosis were evaluated.
Clinical Findings—In each outbreak, morbidity rate was high, there were an appreciable number of deaths, and ferrets of all ages were affected. Affected individuals had acute onset of diarrhea, and feces often contained frank or digested blood. Other clinical signs included dehydration, weakness, lethargy, and weight loss. Fecal examinations of affected ferrets revealed sporadic and inconsistent shedding of coccidial oocysts. Necropsy findings included moderate to marked atrophic enteritis associated with numerous intraepithelial and fewer extracellular coccidial life stages. Sporulated oocysts isolated from feces were consistent with Eimeria furonis. A PCR assay was performed on formalin-fixed, paraffin-embedded sections of intestine for the gene encoding the small subunit of rRNA yielded products with sequences identical to those described for E furonis.
Treatment and Outcome—Supportive care and treatment with sulfadimethoxine over the course of these outbreaks was palliative, but long-term treatment was required and failed to completely eradicate infection as identified by the subsequent finding of oocysts in fecal samples.
Clinical Relevance—Enteric coccidiosis due to infection with E furonis has typically been reported to be subclinical rather than to cause severe gastrointestinal disease in ferrets. This report indicated that infection with E furonis may have contributed to severe enteric disease with high morbidity and mortality rates in 3 densely populated, dynamic groups of ferrets. Furthermore, long-term treatment with anti-coccidials may be required in outbreak situations, but may be ineffectual in completely eradicating infection.
To compare pregnancy-associated glycoprotein 1 (PAG1) concentrations in maternal (jugular vein) and fetal (uterine vein) circulations and amniotic fluid samples between pregnant ewes that were and were not experimentally infected with bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV).
11 healthy pregnant yearling ewes.
Before study initiation, all ewes were naïve to BVDV and confirmed pregnant by transabdominal ultrasonography at approximately 60 days of gestation. At 65 days of gestation, ewes were intranasally inoculated with a noncytopathic BVDV type 1b strain (concentration, 107 TCID50/mL; 2 mL/nostril; n = 6) or an equal volume of BVDV-free viral culture medium (control; 5). A blood sample was collected for measurement of PAG1 concentration before inoculation. At 80 days of gestation, each ewe was anesthetized and underwent an ovariohysterectomy. While sheep were anesthetized, blood samples from the jugular and uterine veins and an amniotic fluid sample were collected for measurement of PAG1 concentration. Fetal tissues underwent real-time PCR analysis for BVDV RNA, and placental specimens underwent histologic evaluation and immunohistochemical staining for BVDV antigen.
At 80 days of gestation, BVDV RNA in fetal tissues and mild placentitis were detected in 5 of 6 BVDV-inoculated ewes. Mean PAG1 concentrations in the maternal and fetal circulations of BVDV-inoculated ewes were significantly less than those in control ewes. Mean amniotic fluid PAG1 concentration did not differ significantly between the 2 groups.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Concentration of PAG1 in the maternal circulation may be a useful biomarker for determining placental health in sheep after viral infection of the reproductive tract.
Objective—To determine clinical, histologic, and immunohistochemical findings for dogs with wart-like lesions involving the paw pads.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Animals—24 dogs (18 Greyhounds and 6 dogs of other breeds).
Procedures—Medical records were reviewed for information on signalment, physical examination findings, concurrent disease processes, location of all lesions, and, when available, results of histologic examination of biopsy specimens. Available biopsy specimens (n = 11) were submitted for immunohistochemical staining and a PCR assay to identify viral inclusion bodies.
Results—In Greyhounds, most lesions involved the pads of the third and fourth digits, had a consistent histologic appearance without evidence of inflammation, were negative for papillomavirus, and had an unsatisfactory response to treatment. In other breeds, lesions often involved the pads of non–weight-bearing digits, had histologic evidence of inflammation, were positive for papillomavirus, and responded to surgical treatment.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that wart-like lesions involving the paw pads of Greyhounds were a distinct clinical entity with features resembling porokeratosis plantaris discreta in humans. In Greyhounds, these lesions were not associated with an underlying viral etiology and, therefore, should not be considered plantar warts. Alternative treatments should be investigated because current treatments were generally unsuccessful in Greyhounds. Wart-like lesions of the paw pads in other breeds were often associated with papillomavirus, and surgical excision appeared curative.
Objective—To determine whether a diagnosis of chronic small bowel disease could be established in a subset of cats that had clinical signs of chronic vomiting, chronic small bowel diarrhea, weight loss, or a combination of these, combined with ultrasonographically determined thickening of the small bowel.
Design—Retrospective case series.
Animals—100 client-owned domestic cats.
Procedures—Medical records of cats with clinical signs of chronic vomiting, chronic small bowel diarrhea, weight loss, or a combination of these, combined with ultrasonographically determined small bowel thickening, that underwent laparotomy and multiple small bowel biopsies between 2008 and 2012 were examined. Biopsy specimens were submitted for histologic evaluation, immunohistochemical evaluation, and, when findings were ambiguous, PCR assay for antigen receptor rearrangement.
Results—Chronic small bowel disease was diagnosed in 99 of the 100 cats. The most common diagnoses were chronic enteritis and intestinal lymphoma.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that cats with clinical signs of chronic small bowel disease should undergo detailed diagnostic testing because they are likely to have clinically important, diagnosable, treatable disease. Clinical signs of small bowel disease, especially weight loss and chronic or recurrent vomiting, are extremely common in cats. These signs should not be considered a normal condition and should not be ignored, regardless of common explanations given by owners, and cats with these signs should undergo appropriate diagnostic testing.
Objective—To determine whether autologous jugular veins provide functional grafts with high 30-day patency rates in an experimental model of systemic-to-pulmonary shunting performed with a modified Blalock-Taussig procedure.
Animals—15 healthy Beagles.
Procedure—A segment of the left jugular vein was implanted between the left subclavian and pulmonary arteries. Echocardiograms were obtained prior to surgery, at day 4 to 7, and at day 30 after surgery. Selective angiograms were performed immediately after surgery and on day 30. Oximetric shunt calculations were made via terminal angiography prior to euthanasia. Gross and histologic evaluations of the grafts were conducted.
Results—Grafts were patent in 12 of 15 dogs 30 days after surgery as assessed via auscultation, color Doppler ultrasonography, angiography, and histologic examination. Echocardiographic analysis revealed compensatory eccentric left ventricular hypertrophy. Mean pulmonary-to-systemic flow ratio was 1.5:1. Histologic evidence of endothelialization of the anastomotic sites and vein graft arterialization was detectable at 30 days.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Autologous jugular vein grafts were effectively used to create a systemic-to-pulmonary shunt by use of a modified Blalock-Taussig procedure. High patency, ready accessibility, low cost, and theoretical adaptative remodeling during patient growth make autologous jugular vein grafts a valuable alternative to synthetic materials.