In This Issue—July 15, 2006

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JAVMA News

183

The AVMA is focusing on the future with recent Executive Board actions to support a study on veterinary workforce needs, fund an AVMA headquarters expansion, and establish strategic goals for the Association's five critical issues. Plans are also under way to appoint a search committee to find a successor for Executive Vice President Bruce W. Little, who has announced his intention to retire at year-end 2007.

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Letters to the Editor

204

Veterinary Medicine Today

What Is Your Diagnosis?

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An 8-year-old dog evaluated because of swelling in the right mandibular region

209

A 6-month-old dog evaluated because of a firm mass on the head

211

Theriogenology Question of the Month

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A bony mass attached to the umbilical cord of the fetal membranes from a 6-year-old horse that had given birth to a healthy foal

215

Scientific Reports

SMALL ANIMALS

Development of a technique for retrobulbar injection in dogs

220

In dogs undergoing intraocular or corneal surgery, paralysis of the extraocular muscles has traditionally been achieved through systemic administration of non-depolarizing neuromuscular blocking agents. However, this technique has been associated with various drawbacks. Evaluation of 3 methods for retrobulbar injection of local anesthetics revealed that the inferior-temporal palpebral (ITP) technique was efficacious and easy to perform, provided thorough coverage of the intraconal retrobulbar space, and was not associated with any clinically important complications. The ITP technique may be a useful alternative to the use of neuromuscular blocking agents in dogs undergoing ocular surgery.

Palliative stenting for management of malignant urethral obstruction in dogs

226

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Urethral obstruction is common in dogs with transitional cell carcinoma or prostatic adenocarcinoma. Because of high morbidity rates associated with surgical management of these tumors, various methods have been developed to palliate clinical signs associated with urethral obstruction. In 12 dogs with malignant urethral obstruction, transurethral placement of metallic stents was found to be a safe and effective method for palliative treatment of the obstruction. However, urinary incontinence and stent dislodgement were potential complications.

Cystoplasty in a dog with bladder necrosis caused by bladder torsion

235

Urinary bladder torsion is a potentially life-threatening emergency in dogs and should be promptly treated as a urinary obstruction. Torsion at the urinary bladder neck causes venous congestion, arterial obstruction, venous thrombosis, and wall necrosis. Urethral obstruction contributes to ischemia of the urinary bladder wall and pressure-induced necrosis as a result of overdistension. Subtotal resection of the urinary bladder can be performed successfully in dogs, if the trigone area and ureteral openings are preserved. The remaining portion of the urinary bladder may be augmented by suturing the urinary bladder remnant to the serosal surface of a nearby portion of colon.

Pneumocephalus and septic meningoencephalitis secondary to dorsal rhinotomy in a dog

240

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A 4-year-old dog was found to have pneumocephalus following multiple dorsal rhinotomies and nasal polypectomy and subsequently developed septic meningoencephalitis. Pneumocephalus is a known predisposing factor for the development of septic meningoencephalitis in humans. Although clinical signs may be mild, early surgical intervention may be warranted in dogs with pneumocephalus to prevent development of CNS infection.

Vacuolar hepatopathy in dogs

246

Vacuolar hepatopathy (VH) is a common hepatic disorder in dogs that typically is associated with glucocorticoid excess. However, a retrospective review of records for 336 dogs with histologically confirmed VH found that dogs had a variety of underlying disorders, with neoplasia, congenital or acquired hepatobiliary disease, and adrenal gland dysfunction being most common. Although high hepatic enzyme activity was common, the broad overlap in values precluded prediction of steroidogenic hormone involvement. Findings support an association among VH, high alkaline phosphatase activity, and illness-associated physiologic stress. Histologic diagnosis of VH does not reliably implicate glucocorticoid treatment or hyperadrenocorticism as the underlying cause.

EQUINE

Hemoperitoneum in horses

253

Hemoperitoneum is an uncommon but potentially lifethreatening complication in horses. Clinical signs are variable and depend on the underlying cause and severity of blood loss. A review of the medical records of 67 horses with hemoperitoneum indicated that the most common causes were trauma and neoplasia, but many cases were idiopathic. Thirty-four horses survived to discharge, 25 were euthanized, and 8 died. Poor short-term outcome was significantly associated with high respiratory rate.

RUMINANTS/CAMELIDS

Disease severity scoring systems for dairy cattle with acute coliform mastitis

259

The ideal disease scoring system for cows with mastitis would allocate most cows needing special treatment or management into a single group (sensitivity) while allocating few cows that did not need special treatment or management to that group (specificity). When 4 scoring systems were used to classify disease severity in 99 cows with acute coliform mastitis, a system based on systemic disease signs was found to be better for identifying cows with bacteremia or an adverse outcome than was a system based on local disease signs. Two scoring systems that were based on a combination of local and systemic disease signs were intermediate in their discriminatory abilities.

Congenital vulvar deformity in 6 alpacas

263

Congenital vulvar deformity in alpacas may result in interference with urine outflow. Alpacas with a completely imperforate vulva may be brought to a veterinarian for examination on an emergency basis shortly after birth, but less severely affected alpacas may be examined later in life, with owner complaints ranging from stranguria or dysuria to urogenital malformation. Vulvoplasty resolves the obstructed urine flow. Because this condition may be heritable, affected alpacas and possibly their sires and dams should not be used for breeding.

WILDLIFE/LABORATORY ANIMALS

Isolation of Salmonella spp from wild North American turtles

266

The CDC estimates that the fecal carriage rate of Salmonella spp in pet reptiles is > 90% and that there are approximately 74,000 cases of reptile-associated salmonellosis in the United States annually. In contrast, bacterial culture of cloacal, fecal, and gastrointestinal tract samples from 94 wild North American turtles of 6 species in 2 genera did not yield Salmonella organisms. Results suggest that the true prevalence of Salmonella carriage was < 5%. Nevertheless, proper hygiene practices should be followed when handling wild turtles.

Tularemia as a cause of fever in a squirrel monkey

269

Francisella tularensis was isolated from blood samples obtained from a 3-year-old female Guyanese squirrel monkey examined because of a sudden onset of lethargy and fever. Treatment with gentamicin and streptomycin resulted in resolution of the infection. The monkey had been housed indoors. However, even limited or indirect exposure to reservoir wildlife hosts and arthropod vectors can lead to transmission of F tularensis. Thus, tularemia should be considered in the differential diagnosis for any animal with febrile disease of unknown cause.

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