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Previous Issue: April 2014
Endoscopically Visualized Lesions, Histologic Findings, and Bacterial Invasion in the Gastrointestinal Mucosa of Dogs with Acute Hemorrhagic Diarrhea Syndrome
Unterer, S., Busch, K., Leipig, M., Hermanns, W., Wolf, G., Straubinger, R.K., Mueller, R.S. and Hartmann, K. (2014) Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 28: 52–58.
Haemorrhagic gastroenteritis syndrome (HGE) is a common and potentially serious disease, but its aetiology is unknown. This prospective study evaluated ten dogs that had been diagnosed with HGE to attempt to identify bacterial species and histological mucosal lesions associated with the disease. Eleven dogs that had had gastroduodenoscopy for different intestinal diseases were used as controls. Dogs that had diseases known to cause haemorrhagic diarrhoea were excluded, as were dogs that had been treated with antibiotics. Gastrointestinal biopsies were collected endoscopically, and examined histolologically. Immunohistochemistry was performed for Clostridium spp and parvovirus. Duodenal biopsies taken in a sterile manner were submitted for bacterial culture. Histologically, acute lesions were only found in the intestines. Clostridium perfringens was found in 6 out of 9 cases, while in the control group it was detected in only one of 11 dogs. The authors note this study shows an apparent association between Clostridium perfringens and HGE. They also recommend that the condition is renamed to reflect lack of involvement of the stomach.
Bottom line: Clostridium perfringens may be associated with haemorrhagic gastroenteritis syndrome.
Necrotizing Meningoencephalitis in Atypical Dog Breeds: A Case Series and Literature Review
Cooper, J.J., Schatzberg, S.J., Vernau, K.M., Summers, B.A., Porter, B.F., Siso, S., Young, B.D. and Levine, J.M. (2014) Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 28: 198–203
Necrotising meningoencephalitis (NME) is an inflammatory disease of the brain, which is non-infectious and usually fatal. It appears to be restricted to a small humber of breeds. This retrospective study describes histologically confirmed NME in atypical breeds, to demonstrate that NME affects a wider variety of dog breeds than previously reported. Four further small breed dogs were reported, a Papillon, a Shih Tzu, a Coton de Tulear and a Brussels Griffon. The median age was 2.5 years. Histological findings included lymphoplasmacytic or histiocytic meningoencephalitis, with cerebrocortical necrosis. Infectious agents were not detected. This study expands the number of breeds in which NME has been reported from 5 to 9.
Bottom line: Necrotising meningoencephalitis should be considered as a differential diagnosis in dogs with signs consistent with inflammatory brain disease, even if they do not belong to one of the typically reported breeds.
Prospective multicenter evaluation of coagulation abnormalities in dogs following severe acute trauma
Holowaychuk, M. K., Hanel, R. M., Darren Wood, R., Rogers, L., O'Keefe, K. and Monteith, G. (2014) Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care, 24: 93–104
Acute trauma can lead to alterations in coagulation parameters. In a prospective, multicentre observational study, 40 dogs which had sustained severe blunt or penetrating trauma were assessed. Within 12 hours of the trauma, samples were taken to test for a variety of parameters, including blood gases, lactate, platelet count, activated clotting time, prothrombin time (PT), activated partial thromboplastin time (aPTT), D-Dimer concentration and thromboelastography. A decreased platelet count was found to be a risk factor for body cavity haemorrhage and blood product administration. Thromboelastography parameters were also found to be a risk factor for blood product administration. Dogs that did not survive tended to be hypocoagulable, with prolonged aPTT being the strongest predictor of mortality. 15% of dogs had an acute traumatic coagulopathy, defined as having two or more abnormal coagulation tests. This was more common if the condition was more severe, blood pressure was lower or lactate concentration was higher. The authors conclude that in dogs with severe trauma and hypoperfusion, thromboelastography and aPTT can help in the decision making regarding blood product administration, and help determine the prognosis.
Bottom line: Acute trauma can lead to important alterations in coagulation parameters.
Evaluation of one- vs. two-layered closure after wedge excision of 43 eyelid tumors in dogs
Romkes, G., Klopfleisch, R. and Eule, J. C. (2014) Veterinary Ophthalmology, 17: 32–40.
Eyelid tumours often require surgical removal in order to prevent them traumatising the cornea. Repair after excision could involve one or two-layer closure. This prospective randomised trial evaluated one and two layer closure techniques following full thickness V-shaped excision of an eyelid tumours. Patients were allocated randomly to one of the two techniques prior to surgery. 38 dogs with a total of 43 eyelid tumours which involved less than 25% of the eyelid margin length were included. The wound and eyelid structure were evaluated post-operatively, and the eyelid function was assessed by interferometry, noninvasive tear film breakup time and Schirmer’s tear test. There were no significant differences between the two groups. No negative influence of the surgery on the eyelid function was found in either group. The tumours were found to be meibomian gland adenomas in 29 out of 32 cases.
Bottom line: This study did not find any significant difference in wound recovery, eyelid structure or function when a one or two layer technique was used to repair the deficit following eyelid tumour removal.
TRIPLE-PHASE HELICAL COMPUTED TOMOGRAPHY IN DOGS WITH HEPATIC MASSES
Kutara, K., Seki, M., Ishikawa, C., Sakai, M., Kagawa, Y., Iida, G., Ishigaki, K., Teshima, K., Edamura, K., Nakayama, T. and Asano, K. (2014) Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound, 55: 7–15.
Computed tomography (CT) can give important information about the presence, size and location of tumours. This study aimed to determine the usefulness of triple-phase helical CT. 70 dogs with hepatic masses underwent triple-phase CT (including pre-contrast, arterial phase, portal venous phase and delayed phase) prior to surgical removal of the masses. 47 of the masses were diagnosed histologically as hepatocellular carcinoma, 14 as nodular hyperplasia and 9 as metastatic tumours. Hepatocellular carcinomas tended to show a heterogenous pattern. Nodular hyperplasias tended to show a homogeneous pattern, with hyper- and isoenhancement in the portal venous and delayed phases. A homogeneous hypoenhancement in the arterial and portal venous phases was found most commonly in metastatic tumours.
Bottom line: Triple phase CT appears to be a useful tool to differentiate hepatocellular carcinoma, nodular hyperplasia and hepatic metastatic tumours in dogs.
Comparison between symptomatic treatment and lomustine supplementation in 71 dogs with intracranial, space-occupying lesions
Van Meervenne, S., Verhoeven, P. S., de Vos, J., Gielen, I. M. V. L., Polis, I. and Van Ham, L. M. L. (2014) Veterinary and Comparative Oncology, 12: 67–77
Brain tumours are becoming more commonly diagnosed since advanced imaging is becoming more widely available. However, effective treatment options are limited, especially where radiotherapy is not available. One treatment that has been frequently used in this setting is the chemotherapy drug lomustine. This retrospective study assessed the survival times of dogs with intracranial masses treated symptomatically with steroids and anti-epileptic drugs versus dogs treated with the same medications together with lomustine. 71 dogs were included in the study, 15 of which were treated symptomatically, and 56 of which also received lomustine. The median survival rates were 60 days for the symptomatically treated dogs and 93 for days for those supplemented with lomustine. This was not statistically significant however. No difference in survival times was found due to age, duration of signs or the mass being localised intra- or extra-axially. Female dogs were found to survive significantly longer than male dogs.
Bottom line: It is uncertain from this study whether lomustine improves survival times in the treatment of dogs with intracranial masses.
The Advanced Locking Plate System (ALPS): A Retrospective Evaluation in 71 Small Animal Patients
Guerrero, T. G., Kalchofner, K., Scherrer, N. and Kircher, P. (2014) Veterinary Surgery, 43: 127–135
The Advanced Locking Plate System (ALPS) is a system used in fracture repair and other orthopaedic procedures. This retrospective case series evaluated the medical records of 29 dogs and 42 cats that had been treated using ALPS. 54 fractures were treated with the system, as well as 12 tarsal or carpal ligament injuries. In 6 cases the system was used to prevent or treat fractures during total hip replacement. There was a 5.5% rate of complications that required revision surgery. In 3 cases fixation failure was found. Wound dehiscence was the most common complication of tarsal arthrodesis. However, all cases healed by the time the study was concluded.
Bottom line: The Advanced Locking Plate System appears to be a useful system for treating orthopaedic conditions in small animals.
Phenotypic characterisation of canine epileptoid cramping syndrome in the Border terrier
Black, V., Garosi, L., Lowrie, M., Harvey, R. J. and Gale, J. (2014) Journal of Small Animal Practice, 55: 102–107
Canine epileptoid cramping syndrome, also known as Spike’s disease, is a cramping disease affecting Border terriers, but is currently poorly understood. This study used an online questionnaire targeted at owners of Border Terriers with suspected canine epileptoid cramping syndrome. 29 cases were included in the study. It was found that the first episode usually occurred before 3 years of age, and most episodes lasted between 2 and 30 minutes, although could last for two and a half hours. Signs observed included difficulty in walking, mild tremor and dystonia. All four limbs, head and neck were frequently affected. Borborygmi were often also observed, and around half of the cases also exhibited vomiting and diarrhoea, often immediately before or after an episode. Most owners had changed the dog’s diet, and half of these reported a reduction in the frequency of episodes after a diet change. The authors note that this syndrome is similar to the human condition, paroxysmal dystonic choreoathetosis. The condition can be associated with gastrointestinal signs and may be diet responsive.
Bottom line: Canine epileptoid cramping syndrome involves tremors, difficulty walking and sometimes gastrointestinal signs.
Prophylactic digital cryotherapy is associated with decreased incidence of laminitis in horses diagnosed with colitis
A Kullman, SJ Hurcombe, HA Roessner, JG Hauptman, RJ Geor and J Belknap Equine Veterinary Journal
Prophylactic digital cryotherapy is often utilised in horses with clinical signs of colitis as it is believed to reduce the risk of development of sepsis-associated laminitis. This retrospective study used logistic regression to assess if horses which received prophylactic digital cryotherapy (in the form of submerging the feet in ice filled bags for a minimum of 48hours) were at reduced risk of this complication. 130 horses from two centres met the inclusion criteria, which included a diagnosis of colitis, clinical evidence of the systemic inflammatory response syndrome, being of a standard size, and consistent application of ice to the feet or no application of ice. 27 of the 130 horses developed laminitis, with seven of these having received prophylactic digital cryotherapy (69 total- 10%), while 20 had not (61 total- 33%). 89 cases were tested for Potomac Horse Fever, of which 56% were positive. This factor was not included in the model as not all horses were tested, although it was recognised as an increased risk factor for the development of laminitis. 16 horses (12%) were subjected to euthanasia whilst hospitalised, 14 of these had been diagnosed with laminitis, 2 had not. The survival rate was 48% for horses which developed laminitis, compared to 98% for those that did not.
Bottom line: In this study supports, prophylactic digital cryotherapy reduced the risk of development of laminitis in horses with gastrointestinal disease and evidence of sepsis.
Comparison of two sampling and culture systems for detection of Salmonella enterica in the environment of a large animal hospital
A Ruple-Czerniak, DS Bolte, BA Burgess and PS Morley Equine Veterinary Journal
Environmental sampling is commonly practiced in equine hospitals in order to detect Salmonella enterica. There are currently many methods for both sampling and culture, which may explain why there is large variation between reported prevalence of positive cultures in different outbreaks. This study compared two reported methods for detection of environmental contamination with Salmonella enterica by comparing 100 pairs of samples obtained from stalls known to have a positive S.enterica faecal shedder. These stalls had undergone a thorough disinfection using an established protocol prior to collection of samples. The first method for collection involved premoistened sponges, the second method used electrostatic wipes; the enrichment and plating methods also varied for each method. The detection rate for S.enterica was 14% using the electrostatic wipe method, and 4% using the premoistened sponges, with the serotype detected matching that of faecal serotype of the animal in all cases. There was agreement for both methods in 88 pairs of samples. There was a significant disagreement overall, with the electrostatic wipe method being significantly more likely to detect S.enterica than the premoistened sponge method. This study also highlighted that despite thorough disinfection, S.enterica was detected in 15% of stalls that had previously housed animals known to be shedding this bacterium.