Novel minimally invasive surgical method for treating ectopic ureters in female dogs
Else Jacobson and others, Veterinary Specialist Services, Underwood, Queensland
Ectopic ureters are the leading cause of urinary incontinence in juvenile dogs. They are a result of a congenital abnormality in which one or both ureters open distal to their normal location in the bladder trigone. The authors investigated the safety and efficacy of cystoscopic-guided scissor transection of ectopic ureters as an alternative to laser ablation in eight female dogs. Seven dogs were available for follow-up, of which six showed an improvement in urinary continence following the procedure. Complications were minor, with three dogs showing transient lower urinary tract signs. They conclude that this method is a safe, effective and minimally invasive alternative to the standard procedure.
Renal function analysis in horses suffering from dehydration
Hsiao-Chien Lo and others, University of Berlin, Germany
A range of conditions in horses, including colitis and diarrhoea, can cause severe dehydration, which can lead to acute kidney injury. Current renal biomarkers can identify equine patients with renal damage, but these may only give useful findings late on in the disease process. The authors investigated the potential use of serum symmetric dimethylarginine (SDMA) as an early biomarker of renal injury in horses and as a potential prognostic indicator. Their results show that SDMA concentrations correlated significantly with creatinine concentrations, but there were no identifiable differences in SDMA concentrations between those horses that survived and those that did not.
Retrospective evaluation of 18 cases of urinary incontinence in cats
Isabelle Mérindol and others, University of Montréal, Canada
Urinary incontinence is much less common in cats than dogs, found in only about 4 percent of feline lower urinary tract disorders. Hence, there is much less information available on the causes, diagnostic features and management of the condition in feline patients. The authors examined the medical records from 18 cases of non-neurological urinary incontinence seen at a university teaching hospital. The most common presenting signs were leakage while resting, a urine-soiled perineum, urine dribbling and a lack of spontaneous micturition. The most common underlying cause was urethral obstruction, usually due to urethral strictures. Cystoscopy and contrast studies were useful in diagnosing the condition.
Use of acute-phase proteins in the evaluation of feline lower urinary tract disease
Heloise Rangel Dinallo and others, School of Veterinary Medicine, Botucatu, Brazil
Obstructive feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD) is a common disorder in cats, in which age, obesity, male gender and a dry food diet are predisposing factors. The condition results in sterile inflammation, which may lead to acute impairment of renal function, an accumulation of electrolytes and an acid-base imbalance. The authors investigated the potential value of acute-phase proteins as biomarkers of tissue damage, which may assist in monitoring treatment and prognosis. Serum and urine samples were taken from a group of 25 cats. These showed that serum amyloid A, alpha-1-acid glycoprotein, fibrinogen and albumin may all have potential as biomarkers of inflammatory processes in cats with obstructive FLUTD.
Influence of the BRAF mutation on survival in dogs with urothelial carcinomas
Julia Gedon and others, Small Animal Clinic, Hofheim am Taunus Germany
Urothelial carcinoma is the most frequently identified tumour of the urinary bladder in dogs. Mutations in the BRAF gene have emerged as a potential diagnostic tool in these patients, but the prognostic significance of genetic tests is uncertain. The authors examined the histological findings in 79 dogs with urothelial carcinoma studied at a veterinary centre over 13 years. A BRAF mutation was identified in 51 cases, but it had no significant influence on survival time. However, the treatment strategy chosen and the tumour location were independent prognostic factors for overall survival.
Phosphorus homeostasis and its impact on renal health in the cat
Jonathan Elliott and Rebecca Geddes, Royal Veterinary College, London
It is recognised that a high dietary intake of inorganic forms of phosphorus is a risk factor for the development of both cardiovascular and renal diseases in human patients. This knowledge has increased veterinary interest in the impact of inorganic phosphorus in prepared pet foods on renal health in cats. The authors review the current understanding of the factors influencing phosphorus homeostasis in this species. They state that long-term feeding studies indicate that prepared diets containing 1g/Mcal of inorganic phosphorus result in low enough urinary phosphate concentrations to avoid any adverse effects on kidney function in healthy adult cats.
Biomarkers of renal injury in dogs following snake envenomation
Hannah Harjen and others, Norwegian University of Life Sciences, Oslo
Dogs bitten by the adder (Vipera berus) are a relatively common presentation at veterinary emergency clinics in European countries during the spring and summer months. Renal tubular injury has been described in dogs following envenomation by this snake, but there is little published information on the clinical effects of such incidents. The authors describe a study examining standard indicators of renal function in envenomated dogs and evaluate two novel biomarkers, urinary cystatin B and urinary clusterin. Their findings suggest that increased cystatin B in urine is a useful indicator of tubular injury in these patients.
Ionised hypercalcaemia in cats with azotaemic chronic kidney disease
Dirk van den Broek and others, Royal Veterinary College, London
Hypercalcaemia is a regular finding in cats with chronic kidney disease (CKD), but our understanding of the pathophysiology of the condition is incomplete. The authors investigated the prevalence of abnormally high levels of the physiologically relevant ionised calcium fraction among 164 client-owned cats with azotaemic CKD. They found that 20 percent of this group had ionised hypercalcaemia. There were also associations between the condition and male cats, higher plasma total calcium and potassium concentrations and lower plasma parathyroid hormone concentrations. The authors suggest that cats presenting with CKD should be monitored for the occurrence of ionised hypercalcaemia.