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Previous Issue: Issue 25
Evaluation of Meniscal Click for Detecting Meniscal Tears in Stifles with Cranial Cruciate Ligament Disease
Neal, B. A., Ting, D., Bonczynski, J. J. et al (2015) Veterinary Surgery, 44, 191–194
Meniscal tears can complicate the recovery from cruciate surgery, and so most orthopods consider diagnosing the condition prior to or at the time of surgery to be important. This study evaluated whether the presence of a palpable meniscal click had good diagnostic accuracy for the presence of a meniscal tear. A prospective case series of 56 dogs with cranial cruciate ligament injury were included. Their stifles were examined before anaesthesia and during anaesthesia but before surgery to assess for a palpable meniscal click. Evaluation before anaesthesia had a 45% sensitivity and a 94% specificity for a meniscal tear. Evaluation during anaethesia had 58% sensitivity and 94% specificity. Meniscal tears were found much more frequently in association with full rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament, compared to partial rupture. The authors recommend that the meniscus is always examined at surgery regardless of findings, since the absence of a meniscal click does not rule out a meniscal tear.
Bottom line: Presence of a meniscal click is a very specific but not very sensitive indicator for meniscal tear.
A retrospective survey of ocular abnormalities in pugs: 130 cases
Krecny, M., Tichy, A., Rushton, J. and Nell, B. (2015) Journal of Small Animal Practice, 56, 96–102
Pugs are known to suffer from a variety of ophthalmological diseases. This retrospective study assessed the case records of 130 pugs presented to an ophthalmology unit over an 11 year period up to 2012. 258 eyes were assessed, and all were considered to have macroblepharon and entropion. Keratoconjuctivitis sicca was found in 39 eyes, distichiasis in 56 and conjunctivitis in 88 eyes. Corneal pigmentation, opacity, vascularisation and ulceration were also frequently found. Diagnosis of keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS) was significantly associated with the presence of corneal pigmentation, although some dogs had corneal pigmentation without KCS. The authors note that the number of cases of corneal pigmentation without evidence of KCS suggests another factor is involved in the development of corneal pigmentation in this breed.
Bottom line: Ocular abnormalities are highly prevalent in Pugs.
Pancreatic surgical biopsy in 24 dogs and 19 cats: postoperative complications and clinical relevance of histological findings
Pratschke, K. M., Ryan, J., McAlinden, A. and McLauchlan, G. (2015) Journal of Small Animal Practice, 56, 60–66
Pancreatitis has historically been a difficult disease to confirm ante mortem, although the introduction of pancreatic lipase tests has helped. This retrospective study assessed the use of pancreatic biopsies in the diagnosis of pancreatic disease, as well as monitoring the post-operative complications associated with the procedure. 24 dogs and 19 cats were included in the study. 10 cases had post-operative complications, 5 of these being pancreatitis. 2 patients were euthanased due to underlying disease. 19 cases had pancreatic pathology, and 7 only had benign pancreatic nodular hyperplasia. Dogs were more likely than cats to have no significant histological findings. In cats, chronic pancreatitis was most common. The authors conclude that pancreatic biopsy can aid case management, and that the risk of complications is low with good surgical technique.
Bottom line: Pancreatic biopsy can aid the management of cases of pancreatic disease, and the risks of surgery should be low.
Thyroid scintigraphy findings in 2096 cats with hyperthyroidism
Peterson, M. E. and Broome, M. R. (2015) Veterinary Radiology & Ultrasound, 56, 84–95
Thyroid scintigraphy is considered the reference standard for the diagnosing and staging of hyperthyroidism in cats. This study evaluated 2096 cats with hyperthyroidism. 665 cases had had unilateral disease, 1060 had bilateral assymetric disease ie the two lobes were unequal size, and 257 had bilaterally symmetric disease. 81 had 3 or more areas of increased radionuclide uptake and were considered to have multifocal disease. Radionuclide uptake was most common in the cervical area, but was sometimes seen at the thoracic inlet or thoracic cavity. Thyroid carcinoma was suspected in 1.7% of cases. The authors conclude that this study supports previous information that hyperthyroidism in cats is usually due to unilateral or bilateral thyroid nodules, but that ectopic thyroid disease and thyroid carcinoma are occasionally seen.
Bottom line: Most disease in hyperthyroid cats is due to cervical disease, but abnormal thyroid tissue is sometimes found elsewhere.
Evaluation of the Effect of Orally Administered Acid Suppressants On Intragastric pH in Cats
Parkinson, S., Tolbert, K., Messenger, K., Odunayo, A., Brand, M., Davidson, G., Peters, E., Reed, A. and Papich, M.G. (2015) Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 29, 104–112
Various antacids are used in cats to treat gastrointestinal erosion and ulceration. This randomised, four-way crossover study aimed to compare the effects of oral famotidine with two oral omeprazole preparations. Six healthy adult DSH cats were included in the study, and received fractionated omeprazole tablet (fOT), omeprazole reformulated paste (ORP), famotidine or placebo. Gastric pH was monitored for 4 days, starting from day 4 of treatment. Plasma omeprazole concentrations were assessed at day 7. The mean percentage of time that gastric pH was above 3 was 68% for fOT, 74% for ORP, 42% for famotidine and 16% for placebo. The authors conclude that both the omeprazole preparations provided superior suppression of gastric acid than famotidine or placebo. The fractionated enteric-coated omeprazole tablet still appeared to be effective despite the enteric coating being disrupted.
Bottom line: Omeprazole is effective at increasing intragastric pH.
Randomized Phase III Trial of Piroxicam in Combination with Mitoxantrone or Carboplatin for First-Line Treatment of Urogenital Tract Transitional Cell Carcinoma in Dogs
Allstadt, S.D., Rodriguez, C.O., Boostrom, B., Rebhun, R.B. and Skorupski, K.A. (2015) Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, 29, 261–267
Transitional cell carcinoma (TCC) of the urinary tract is a common neoplasm, and is resistant to treatment with many chemotherapy protocols. This prospective, open-label, phase III randomised study aimed to compare the progression free interval (PFI) of dogs with TCC treated with mitoxantrone and piroxicam to dogs receiving carboplatin and piroxicam. 50 dogs with TCC, and no evidence of azotaemia were included in the study. Staging was performed at 6 week intervals. No difference in response was found between the two groups. No dog showed a complete response. Of those treated with mitoxantrone, 8% showed a partial response, and 69% had stable disease. In the carboplatin group, 13% showed a partial response, and 54% had stable disease. The progression free interval was not statistically different between the two groups, being 106 days for mitoxantrone and 74 days for carboplatin. Prostatic involvement was a negative prognostic indicator.
Bottom line: No difference was detected in this study in outcome for dogs with TCC treated with piroxicam together with either mitoxantrone or carboplatin.
Efficacy of low-level laser therapy on hair regrowth in dogs with noninflammatory alopecia: a pilot study
Olivieri, L., Cavina, D., Radicchi, G., Miragliotta, V. and Abramo, F. (2015) Veterinary Dermatology, 26, 35–e11
Canine non-inflammatory alopecia consists of a number of different skin diseases of different aetiologies and pathogeneses. This study aimed to test the efficacy of laser therapy on hair regrowth in these cases. 7 dogs with clinical and histopathological diagnosis of noninflammatory alopecia were included in the study and were treated twice weekly for up to two months with a low level laser. An alopecic area was left untreated in each case to serve as a control. In one case, post-treatment biopsies were obtained from treated and untreated areas. Coat regrowth was found to be greatly improved in six out of seven cases, and improved in the other one after treatment. The area occupied by hair follicles was larger in the treated sample compared to the untreated samples. The authors conclude that this study shows promising effects of laser on hair regrowth in these cases.
Bottom line: Low level laser therapy may show promise in the treatment of canine non-inflammatory alopecia.
Neuropharmacological lesion localization in idiopathic Horner's syndrome in Golden Retrievers and dogs of other breeds
Simpson, K. M., Williams, D. L. and Cherubini, G. B. (2015) Veterinary Ophthalmology, 18, 1–5
Golden Retrievers are prone to idiopathic Horner’s syndrome. This study aimed to evaluate the location of the lesion using pharmacological testing of denervation hypersensitivity with phenylephrine. 21 dogs of nine different breeds were studied, including ten Golden Retrievers. In 5 cases, an underlying disease was identified, but none of these were Golden Retrievers. In eight Golden Retrievers, the lesion was considered to be postganglionic based on a mean of 10 minutes for response, and in 2 cases was preganglionic, (20 and 24 minutes to respond). In all these cases, only unilateral signs were present, and they were self-limiting within 15 weeks. No cases recurred. The authors note that the finding of 80% of cases demonstrating post-ganglionic lesions contradicts previous reports of idiopathic Horner’s in Golden Retrievers being a pre-ganglionic condition.
Bottom line: Idiopathic Horner’s syndrome in Golden Retrievers can involve post-ganglionic lesions.
Changes in the faecal microbiota of mares precede the development of post partum colic
JS Weese, SJ Holcombe, RM Emberston, KA Kurtz, HA Roessner, M Jalali and SE Wismer Equine Veterinary Journal
Recent studies have explored the complex nature of the equine faecal microbiota; this study aimed to determine if there was a consistent changes in the microbiota preceding an episode of colic. A population of pregnant mares was used; faecal samples were collected from 221 mares, of which 24 developed post partum colic. Thirteen samples were suitable for microbiota analysis, 13 time-matched controls from pregnant mares were used and 5 non-pregnant mares were used as an additional control group. Pre and post foaling faecal samples were analysed by next generation sequencing following DNA extraction. The faecal microbiota during late pregnancy was different from that of non-pregnant control mares, but only at in the microbial community membership and structure, rather than differences in phyla. There was no significant impact of foaling on the faecal microbiome, however faecal samples collected prior to colic episodes had a significantly higher relative abundance of Proteobacteria. Samples with a relative abundance of Firmicutes of <50% all preceded a colic episode.
Bottom line: This study found consistent changes in faecal microbiota which preceded episodes of colic; this may lead to identification of higher risk mares and manipulation of the microbiota in order to reduce the risk of colic.
Lunging on hard and soft surfaces: Movement symmetry of trotting horses considered sound by their owners
T Pfau, C Jennings, H Mitchell, E Olsen, A Walker, A Egenvall, S Tröster, R Weller and M Rhodin Equine Veterinary Journal
The difference in movement symmetry in lunged horses on different surfaces was assessed in this study using quantitative gait analysis. Twenty-three horses, deemed sound according to their owners were used in the study. Lameness assessment included trotting in hand on a straight line and lunging on a 10m circle on both reins on both hard and soft surfaces. Fourteen horses were assessed as having a forelimb lameness, with both surface and rein having an effect on movement symmetry in these horses, with asymmetry of head movement most marked when the lame limb was on the outside of the circle. In the nine horses assessed as moving symmetrically, there was no effect of surface or rein on head or pelvic movement symmetry. Within both groups variation of movement symmetry was noted, emphasising the need to include lunging assessment before classifying a horse as ‘sound’.
Bottom line: Assessment of horses on a straight line only should not be used as a sole measure of lameness, assessment on both reins and on differing surfaces should be undertaken.