Current Concepts

Current Concepts in the Management of Congestive Heart Failure

Heart failure is often the outcome for a variety of diseases in cats and dogs, with the exceptions of congenital disease (e.g., PDA) or certain acquired diseases, like taurine deficiency and idiopathic pericarditis.There is no cure for heart failure, therefore, treatment is determined by improving  clinical signs and improving the quality of life. Treatment options may vary based on the underlying type of disease (e.g., hypertrophic cardiomyopathy versus chronic valvular disease) and it may be more essential to treat the body’s response to the failing heart rather than the appearance of the heart itself. Continue reading

Current Concepts

Canine meningioma:
Diagnosis and Treatment Options in Dogs

Picture 1: The transfrontal approach through the frontal sinus to the frontal lobe of the brain

Picture 1: The transfrontal approach through the frontal sinus to the frontal lobe of the brain

The diagnosis of a brain tumor is devastating news for most pet owners. It may be hard to make a decision on what to do during this time. The term “brain tumor” simply means a mass within the skull. Due to their location brain tumors – whether they are benign or malignant – will have malignant biological behavior to them. The brain is surrounded by a rigid skull which gives little space for volume expansion. A growing or invading tumor adds more tissue to this closed space. Initially the patient can compensate for the volume increase, but overtime, as the mass continues to grow, the rising pressure on the brain compromises its function. Brain herniation, or physical displacement of a portion of the brain into an adjacent compartment within the skull, is a rare but serious life threatening complication of increased intracranial pressure. Continue reading

Current Concepts

Feline Cholangitis

Inflammatory disease is the second most common cause of hepatobiliary disease in cats. The histological classification of feline inflammatory liver disease is confusing. Terms used in the literature have included suppurative or acute cholangiohepatitis, chronic cholangiohepatitis, chronic lympocytic cholangitis, progressive lymphocytic cholangitis, sclerosing cholangitis, lymphoplasmacytic cholangitis/cholangiohepatitis, lymphocytic portal hepatitis, and biliary cirrhosis. This lack of consistency has made it difficult to compare reported cases. In 2004, the WSAVA Liver Disease and Pathology Standardization Research Group proposed a new classification scheme in order to provide consistency in terminology. Since the group felt that the inflammation was primarily centered on the biliary tree it defined three distinct histopathologic forms of feline cholangitis: 1.) neutrophilic cholangitis (acute and chronic) 2.) lymphocytic cholangitis and 3.) chronic cholangitis associated with biliary fluke infestation. Cats can get true chronic hepatitis but it is rare. Copper toxicity would be one to rule out.

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Current Concepts

Interventional Endourology

MaryAnna Labato, DVM, DACVIM (SAIM)

Endourology is the branch of urologic surgery concerned with closed procedures for visualizing or manipulating the urinary tract. The techniques are typically reserved for disorders of the urethra, urinary bladder, ureters and the pelvis of the kidney. In human medicine endourology has advanced tremendously over the past 20-30 years; however, in veterinary medicine the discipline is just starting to develop.

Some of the more commonly performed procedures in veterinary medicine include urethral stenting for the treatment of neoplasia and strictures, nephrostomy tube placement, ureteral stenting, percutaneous nephrolithotomy and cystoscopic–guided laser ablation of ectopic ureters and urethral transitional cell carcinomas. Additionally, lasers and shock wave lithotripsy may be used for the treatment of upper and lower urinary tract calculi. Continue reading