Risk factors for dehiscence following intestinal resection and anastomosis
Emily Mouat and others, University of Pennsylvania
Dehiscence has been found to occur in up to 16% of procedures involving intestinal resection and anastomosis, and the mortality rate in such cases is likely to reach up to 80%. The authors assessed clinical and laboratory findings in 35 dogs undergoing this procedure to identify those factors correlating with patient survival. Blood and abdominal fluid lactate and glucose measurements were made at 24 hours and 48 hours post-operatively, along with fluid cytology, culture and volume measurements.
Patients with intestinal dehiscence were significantly more likely to have a positive abdominal fluid culture one day after surgery and to have had a longer section of bowel resected. There was a greater risk of dehiscence in those patients in which abdominal fluid was collected by a closed suction drain. It is not clear why the presence of the drain affected outcomes: it may be due to the drain altering the abdominal environment in ways likely to induce sepsis or it may be a selection bias in which drains are more likely to be used in patients with significant abdominal pathology.
Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 50 (4): 254-263.
Point of care ELISA for detecting antibodies to six common pathogens in dogs
Brett Stillman and others, IDEXX Laboratories, Westbrook, Maine
The authors have been involved in the development of an in-clinic ELISA designed for the detection of antibodies to heartworm Diro laria immitis and five tick-borne pathogens (Anaplasma phagocytophilum, A. platys, Borrelia burgdorferi, Ehrlichia canis and E. ewingii). The technology was assessed in tests at four first opinion practices and two academic referral centres. The sensitivity and specificity of the assay against D. immitis antibodies was 98.9% and 99.3%, respectively, compared with 93.2% and 99.2% for A. phagocytophilum, 89.2% and 99.2% for A. platys, 96.7% and 98.8% for B. burgdorferi, 97.8% and 92.3% for E. canis and 96.5% and 93.9% for E. ewingii.
It was, therefore, a comprehensive in-house screening test for all the pathogens evaluated.
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 245 (1): 80-86.
Performance of a vessel sealing device in canine splenectomy procedures
Christopher Monarski and others, University of California, Davis
Vessel sealing devices are being used increasingly to prevent haemorrhage in surgical procedures. They rely on pressure and energy to permanently fuse vessels by melting the collagen and elastin in the vessel wall to form a plastic-like seal. The authors compared the performance of such a device with that of a conventional surgical stapler in 72 dogs undergoing splenectomy procedures. They found that the device allowed a statistically significant reduction in surgery time, down from a mean 66.9 minutes to 58.4 minutes, and without any adverse effect on outcomes.
Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 50 (1): 42-45.
Chondroprotective effects of zoledronic acid on articular cartilage in dogs
Michael Dearmin and others, University of Georgia
The bisphosphonates are a class of drugs that have been shown in humans to have clinically useful effects on bone metabolism in a range of conditions. The authors investigated whether one such drug, zoledronic acid, has beneficial effects on articular cartilage in dogs with experimentally-induced osteoarthritis. When the agent was administered at a high dose of 25μg/kg there were fewer total articular defects and lower severity scores in treated dogs with cranial-cruciate transected stifle joints than in untreated controls. There were also less significant changes to the structure of collagen fibres in the synovial fluid in the treated group.
American Journal of Veterinary Research 75 (4): 329-337.
Nutritional management of acute pancreatitis in dogs and cats
Kristine Jensen and Daniel Chan, Royal Veterinary College, Hertfordshire
Acute pancreatitis is a common illness in small animal patients and though normally mild and self-limiting, it can develop systemic complications which are often fatal. Experimental and clinical data suggest that nutritional management can play an important therapeutic role in both veterinary and human medical patients with acute pancreatitis. The authors reviewed the evidence on nutritional management in dogs and cats, which indicate an important role for early enteral feeding, i.e. within 48 hours of the diagnosis of pancreatitis, in improving outcomes in patients with this condition.
Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care 24 (3): 240-250.
Comparison of sampling methods for canine superficial bacterial pyoderma
Philippa Ravens and others, Small Animal Specialist Hospital, North Ryde, New South Wales
Superficial bacterial pyoderma is a common secondary complication of a range of skin disorders in dogs, with Staphylococcus pseudintermedius the organism most commonly isolated from such cases. The authors compared the results using three methods of skin surface sampling – a dry cotton swab, a saline moistened swab and skin surface scraping – in 27 dogs with superficial bacterial pyoderma and also tested the antimicrobial susceptibility of those organisms isolated. The three methods produced similar results and are each equally suitable for obtaining samples for culture. Most isolates were susceptible to cephalexin and amoxicillin clavulanate.
Australian Veterinary Journal 92 (5): 149-155.
Reliability of methods for predicting intraluminal tracheal stent length
Thomas Monaco and others, Veterinary Surgical Center, Leesburg, Virginia
Tracheal collapse is an irreversible, progressive degenerative disease of the airway that primarily affects small and toy dog breeds. Intraluminal stents are a minimally invasive method for supporting the cervical and thoracic trachea following such changes. The authors evaluated the accuracy of segmental measurement techniques for predicting immediate post-deployment intraluminal stent length in dogs with naturally occurring disease. Radiographs of 12 client-owned dogs were viewed retrospectively following the procedure and the inter-and intra-observer reliability of the measurements was shown to be good to high.
Canadian Veterinary Journal 55 (5): 435-441.
A morphometric method for estimating body composition in overweight dogs
Angela Witzel and others, University of Tennessee
Veterinary staff need to be able to judge body composition to develop feeding plans for overweight dogs but there are currently no accurate, non-invasive measures of body condition available for use in first opinion clinics. The authors developed a morphometric system for predicting the body fat index and the results were compared with those from a traditional five-point visual body condition scoring system. The body fat index created using these methods was accurate to within 10% of the values measured with the gold standard dual energy x-ray absorbiometry method in 53% of dogs, compared with only 13% with the visual condition scoring system.
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 244 (11): 1,279-1,284.
Outcome of surgery for the correction of a persistent right aortic arch
Ingar Krebs and others, University of Illinois
Vascular ring anomalies resulting from abnormal aortic arch development are a common cause of regurgitation in young dogs. Medical treatment is usually unrewarding and the defect is normally treated surgically. The authors investigated the short- and long-term outcomes of surgery for a persistent aortic arch in 52 dogs. Of these dogs, 92% survived to discharge, although 18% of those survivors were euthanased within two months post-operatively. The long-term outcome was judged to be excellent in 30% of cases, good in 57% and poor in 13%.
Journal of the American Animal Hospital Association 50 (3): 181-186.
Findings in dogs with incidental adrenal gland lesions detected using ultrasonography
Audrey Cook and others, Texas A&M University
Use of advanced imaging modalities has led to the routine detection of adrenal gland abnormalities in patients without evidence of adrenal disease. The authors determined the prevalence and clinical significance of such features in 151 dogs where the lesion was discovered using abdominal ultrasonography. Malignant tumours were reported in six of 20 dogs that underwent adrenal glandectomy or necropsy. These cases had lesions with a maximum dimension of 20 to 46mm whereas in cases with benign lesions the defect was no bigger than 20mm. These incidental adrenal gland lesions were significantly more common in older and heavier dogs.
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association 244 (10): 1,181-1,185.
Explanation for an apparently common “defect” following canine cruciate surgery
Julien Olive and others, University of Montreal
Tibial plateau levelling osteotomy is a well-established technique for the surgical stabilisation of a cranial cruciate ligament rupture in dogs.
A radiolucent line superimposed on the tibial plateau has occasionally been observed on post-operative radiographs. As one case with this feature developed catastrophic implant failure, preventive post-operative immobilisation has been standard for those dogs with this feature treated at the authors’ centre. However, on retrospective examination of records from 80 dogs, they found that this feature was a spurious fracture line created by the medial margin of the tibial osteotomy. Confounding factors such as tibial misalignment may explain the higher complication rate apparently associated with this feature.
Veterinary Surgery 43 (2): 150-154.
Genetic variation in BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes in dogs with mammary tumours
Sinem Enginler and others, Istanbul University, Turkey
Mammary tumours are the most common type of neoplasm found in female dogs. In bitches, as in women, the genes designated BRCA1 and BRCA2 are significantly associated with the development of such tumours. The authors sequenced the relevant genes from 25 dogs with mammary tumours and 10 healthy animals. They identified for the first time in this study, two separate single nucleotide polymorphisms present in each of these genes which appear to be associated with the development of mammary tumours.
Veterinary Research Communications 38 (1): 21-27.