In This Issue—June 1, 2014

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JAVMA News

Shelter medicine has become a distinct field with a range of disciplines, and it now has provisional recognition as a veterinary specialty. In April, the AVMA Executive Board approved provisional recognition for the shelter medicine specialty and an equine dentistry specialty, and adopted a policy against horse tripping. See page 1218

Letters to the Editor

See page 1243

What Is Your Diagnosis?

See pages 1247, 1253

ECG of the Month

See page 1258

Animal Behavior Case of the Month

See page 1260

Pathology in Practice

See page 1265

reference point

Exploring fructosamine beyond diabetes mellitus

Although the use of fructosamine concentration as a marker of chronic hyperglycemia is now considered commonplace within veterinary medicine, much remains to be elucidated about the formation, lifespan, and role of fructosamine in diabetic and nondiabetic disease.

See page 1268

Use of a novel morphometric method and body fat index system to estimate body composition in overweight and obese dogs

Excess weight and obesity have become more common in pet dogs in recent years, but owners are often poor judges of their pet's body condition. Development of methods to accurately estimate body fat percentage in overweight and obese dogs would assist veterinarians in developing treatment plans. In a study of 83 overweight or obese dogs ≥ 1 year of age, equations developed on the basis of morphometric measurements and a body fat index based on visual and palpation-based descriptors were both more accurate (ie, yielded values within 10% of the value obtained with dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry) in estimating body fat percentage than was the body condition score assessed on a 5-point scale.

See page 1279

Use of a morphometric method and body fat index system to estimate body composition in overweight and obese cats

Approximately 25% to 40% of pet cats are overweight or obese, and obesity in pet cats appears to be a growing problem. Body condition scores correspond reasonably well with body fat percentage in normal to slightly overweight cats, but can underestimate adiposity for most obese cats. In a study involving 76 overweight or obese cats ≥ 1 year of age, equations developed on the basis of morphometric measurements and a body fat index based on visual and palpation-based evaluations were both more accurate (ie, yielded values within 10% of the value obtained with dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry) in estimating body fat percentage than was the body condition score assessed on a 5-point scale.

See page 1285

Intra-articular administration of morphine, dexmedetomidine, or a morphine-dexmedetomidine combination immediately following stifle joint surgery in dogs

Results of a new study suggest that in dogs undergoing tibial tuberosity advancement or tibial plateau leveling osteotomy because of cranial cruciate ligament rupture, intra-articular administration of a combination of morphine and dexmedetomidine provides longer-lasting postoperative analgesia, compared with intra-articular administration of morphine or dexmedetomidine alone. The study included 44 dogs with cranial cruciate ligament rupture that were randomly assigned to received intra-articular injections of saline solution (0.2 mL/kg [0.09 mL/lb]), morphine (0.1 mg/kg [0.045 mg/lb]), dexmedetomidine (2.5 μg/kg [1.14 μg/lb]), or a combination of morphine and dexmedetomidine just prior to skin closure.

See page 1291

Effects of repeated blood donations on iron status and hematologic variables of canine blood donors

The increase in demand for blood components in canine practice has led to an increase in the number of dogs providing frequent blood donations, prompting concerns about the safety of this practice. In a study in which hematologic variables were evaluated before and 10 days after each blood collection in 16 dogs donating 13% of total blood volume every 2 months, 16 dogs donating 13% of TBV every 3 months, and 25 dogs donating 15% of TBV every 3 months for 1 year, significant increases in RBC distribution width, platelet count, WBC count, and reticulocyte percentage were detected after blood donation in all groups. Dogs donating 13% of TBV every 2 months had a significant decrease in iron stores.

See page 1298

Malassezia spp on the periocular skin of dogs and their association with blepharitis, ocular discharge, and the application of ophthalmic medications

Malassezia spp are opportunistic pathogens commonly associated with dermatitis and otitis in dogs. In a cross-sectional clinical trial, samples were obtained from the eyelid skin in 84 dogs (167 eyelids) and evaluated cytologically for Malassezia organisms. Malassezia organisms were detected on the periocular skin of 3 of 56 (5%) clinically normal dogs, but were also frequently found on the periocular skin of dogs that had mucoid or mucopurulent ocular discharge or that were administered topical aqueous-based ophthalmic medications. Findings suggested that the periocular skin of dogs with ocular discharge and dogs administered ophthalmic medications should be cytologically evaluated for Malassezia organisms.

See page 1304

Osseous-associated cervical spondylomyelopathy in dogs

Dogs with cervical spondylomyelopathy can be classified into those with osseous-associated CSM and those with disk-associated CSM. Reports of CSM in dogs often combine these groups, but there may be differences in signalment or outcome. In a review of medical records for 27 dogs with osseous-associated CSM, median age was 2 years. For medically treated dogs (n = 7), median initial neurologic grade was 2; for surgically treated dogs (20), median initial neurologic grade was 3. Median survival time was 43 months for medically treated dogs and 60 months for surgically treated dogs. Fifteen of 19 dogs treated surgically had improved neurologic grades 4 to 8 weeks after surgery and had a good to excellent long-term outcome.

See page 1309

Partial resection of the hyoid apparatus during surgical treatment of ectopic thyroid carcinomas in dogs

A review of medical records for 5 dogs with an ectopic neuroendocrine tumor that underwent tumor excision with partial hyoidectomy suggested that partial resection of the hyoid apparatus may be tolerated well and be associated with functional outcomes. During surgery in each case, the thyrohyoid and ceratohyoid or epihyoid bones were sharply transected, allowing en bloc removal of the tumor. All 5 dogs were able to eat and drink between 7 and 24 hours after surgery, with no signs of dysphagia, ptyalism, or abnormal tongue carriage. Four dogs were still alive at last follow-up between 173 and 422 days after surgery. One dog was euthanized 587 days after surgery because of lethargy, inappetence, and hypercalcemia.

See page 1319

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