In This Issue • March 1, 2017

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JAVMA News

Earlier this year, the AVMA adopted a policy calling for responsible breeding to minimize inherited disorders in pets. The Association also released a much-anticipated report that describes telemedicine as an important tool in veterinary practice, but states that telemedicine must be conducted in compliance with a legally defined veterinarian-client-patient relationship.

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What Is Your Diagnosis?

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Pathology in Practice

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TIMELY TOPICS IN NUTRITION

Use of probiotics in small animal veterinary medicine

Probiotics are live microorganisms that, when consumed in adequate amounts, have the potential to confer a beneficial health effect. However, a clear role for administration of probiotics to dogs and cats and clear clinical benefits are not evident on the basis of the current literature.

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Small Animals & Exotic

Continuous radiotelemetric monitoring of intragastric pH in a dog with peptic ulceration

A 6-year-old dog was evaluated because of vomiting, melena, and signs of abdominal pain following accidental ingestion of meloxicam tablets. Abdominal ultrasonography revealed peptic ulceration, and esophagogastroduodenoscopy confirmed severe proximal duodenal ulceration. A radiotelemetric pH-monitoring capsule was placed in the gastric fundus under endoscopic guidance for continuous at-home monitoring of intragastric pH and response to treatment with sucralfate and omeprazole. Continuous radiotelemetric monitoring was useful for confirming that treatment achieved a predetermined target pH and demonstrating the impact of missed doses. Duodenal ulceration resolved with twice-daily but not once-daily omeprazole administration.

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Calcium sulfate dihydrate urolithiasis in a pet rabbit

A 3-year-old rabbit was evaluated because of a 1-day history of anorexia and signs of depression. The owner reported that the rabbit had been fed a routine diet, received water via a sipper bottle, and was allowed free movement around the home. It had been observed by the owner to bite and chew gypsum-based plaster from the walls of the home. Abdominal radiography and ultrasonography revealed radiopaque material in the urinary bladder, irregular thickening of the urinary bladder wall, and gaseous distention of the cecum. Laparotomy-assisted flushing of the urinary bladder and urethra was performed, and the rabbit recovered without complications. Composition analysis indicated the uroliths consisted of calcium sulfate dihydrate.

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Equine

Cardiac findings in Quarter Horses with heritable equine regional dermal asthenia

Heritable equine regional dermal asthenia is an autosomal recessive disorder in horses characterized by loose, fragile skin that tears easily. Now, results of a case-control study involving 22 affected horses and 19 unaffected control horses suggest that tissues other than skin with high fibrillar collagen content, such as cardiac tissue, may also be abnormal in horses with HERDA. Mean and maximum ultimate tensile strength of heart valves were significantly lower in HERDA-affected horses than in controls. However, most echocardiographic data did not differ between affected and control horses, suggesting that echocardiography may not be useful to detect a substantial loss in heart valve tensile strength.

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Effects of sensor position on kinematic data obtained with an inertial sensor system during gait analysis of trotting horses

Various horse-mounted systems have been developed to assist in the diagnosis of mild lameness in horses, with one of these inertial sensor systems having achieved widespread clinical use. Although the system is easy to use and reportedly can help identify mild lameness, a study of 12 horses with mild to moderate lameness of at least 1 hind limb, with or without lameness of the forelimbs, found that a 2-cm change in the location of the pelvic sensor had a significant effect on hind limb kinematic data. On the other hand, altering the location of the right forelimb sensor by 2 cm medially or laterally had no significant effect on forelimb or hind limb kinematics.

See page 548

Ruminants

Thermal and nuclear scintigraphic imaging for diagnosis of lumbosacral diskospondylosis in a bucking bull

An 8-year-old bull was evaluated because of left hind limb lameness first noticed 2 months earlier during a rodeo bucking performance when the bull appeared to land inappropriately on the limb. High-definition infrared thermal imaging revealed a pattern of reduced skin temperature in the left lumbar and gluteal regions suggestive of disrupted sympathetic control of peripheral blood flow. Nuclear scintigraphy revealed a focal area of increased radioisotope uptake on the left ventrolateral aspect of the L2–3 intervertebral joint. A presumptive diagnosis of ventrolateral vertebral spondylosis resulting in spinal nerve impingement was made. The bull was treated with methylprednisolone and polysulfated glycosaminoglycans and subsequently recovered.

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