Clinical manifestations of heartworm disease in cats are variable; most cats seem to tolerate the infection well for extended periods. Heartworm-infected cats may undergo spontaneous self-cure due to the natural death of parasites without any symptomatology, or they may suddenly show dramatic and acute symptoms. Sudden death in apparently healthy cats is not a rare event. Thoracic radiographs are important tool for the diagnosis of cardiopulmonary disease. However, thoracic abnormalities are often absent or transient and highly variable in heartworm-infected cats. Findings, such as enlargement of the peripheral branches of the pulmonary arteries, with a varying degree of pulmonary parenchymal disease and hyperinflation, are the most typical features consistent with infection. A field study was performed for cats referred to the Veterinary Hospital Città di Pavia from January 1998 to December 2001 for routine health examinations and procedures to evaluate the clinical evolution and radiographic findings of feline heartworm infection. Thirty-four asymptomatic cats diagnosed with feline heartworm infection by antibody and antigen tests together with an echocardiogram that allowed worm visualization were included in the follow-up study. Cats were routinely examined every 3 months from the time of heartworm diagnosis until the outcome (self-cure or death). Self-cure was defined as no positive serology for heartworm antigens and no visualization of worms by echocardiography. A final examination for antibodies was carried after 12 months as a final confirmation of self-cure. Twenty-eight cats (82.4%) self-cured; including 21 that showed no clinical signs of infection throughout the study. Six cats died. The most common clinical features observed were acute respiratory symptoms and sudden death. Infection lasted over 3 years in the majority of the cats enrolled in the study. Thoracic radiograph appearance was variable, and the most commonly observed findings were focal and diffuse pulmonary parenchymal abnormalities.
Clinical evolution and radiographic findings of feline heartworm infection in asymptomatic cats / L. Venco, C. Genchi, M. Genchi, G. Grandi, L.H. Kramer. - In: VETERINARY PARASITOLOGY. - ISSN 0304-4017. - 158:3(2008 Dec 10), pp. 232-237.
|Titolo:||Clinical evolution and radiographic findings of feline heartworm infection in asymptomatic cats|
GENCHI, CLAUDIO (Secondo)
|Parole Chiave:||Cats; Feline heartworm; Heartworm infection; Radiographic evaluation of heartworm|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore VET/06 - Parassitologia e Malattie Parassitarie degli Animali|
|Data di pubblicazione:||10-dic-2008|
|Digital Object Identifier (DOI):||http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2008.09.011|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|