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Cardiomyopathy, arterial thrombembolism and hypercoagulability in cats
Arterial thromboembolism (ATE) is a common complication of feline cardiomyopathy; however, the pathogenesis of ATE is unknown. Is there perhaps a systemic activation of the coagulation cascade (hypercoagulability) in affected cats, and endothelial injury promotes ATE? An interesting hypothesis...


Healthy cats (n = 30) and 3 groups of cardiomyopathic cats: Group (1) left atrial enlargement only (LAE [n = 11]), ie, left atrial to aortic ratio >1.4; Group (2) LAE with spontaneous echocardiographic contrast, atrial thrombi or both (SEC-T [n = 16]); and Group (3) acute ATE with LAE (n = 16).

Methods: Hypercoagulability was defined by 2 or more laboratory abnormalities reflecting coagulation factor excess (high fibrinogen concentration or Factor VIII coagulant activity), inhibitor deficiency (low antithrombin activity), or thrombin generation (high thrombin-antithrombin complex [TAT] and d-dimer concentrations).

High von Willebrand factor antigen concentration (vWF : Ag) was considered a marker of endothelial injury. Data were analyzed using nonparametric statistics.

Results: The 3 groups of cats with cardiac disease had higher median fibrinogen concentrations than did the healthy cats.

Criteria of hypercoagulability were found exclusively in cats with SEC-T (50%) and ATE (56%).

Hypercoagulability was not associated with left atrial size or congestive heart failure (CHF). ATE cats had significantly higher median vWF : Ag concentration than did the other groups.

Conclusions and Clinical Importance: Systemic hypercoagulability is evident in many cardiomyopathic cats, often without concurrent CHF or overt ATE.

Hypercoagulabilty may represent a risk factor for ATE.

High vWF : Ag in ATE cats was attributed to downstream endothelial injury from the occlusive thrombus.


Source: T. Stokol, et al (2008): Hypercoagulability in Cats with Cardiomyopathy. In: Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine
Volume 22 Issue 3, Pages 546 - 552




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SMALL ANIMAL PRACTICE

Pyothorax in dogs and cats - a review
Pyothorax, also known as thoracic empyema, is characterized by the accumulation of septic purulent fluid within the pleural space. While the actual route of pleural infection often remains unknown, the oral cavity and upper respiratory tract appear to be the most common source of microorganisms causing pyothorax in dogs and cats. In human medicine, pyothorax is a common clinical entity associated with bacterial pneumonia and progressive parapneumonic effusion. This excellent update reviews the current literature in reference to the pathophysiology, diagnosis, and treatment of pyothorax in dogs and cats.

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