Risk Factors and Clinical Presentation in Dogs with Increased Serum Pancreatic Lipase Concentrations—A Descriptive Analysis
Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA
Gastrointestinal Laboratory, Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, Texas A&M University, College Station, TX 77843, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editors: Aarti Kathrani and Romy M. Heilmann
Received: 20 May 2022
Revised: 16 June 2022
Accepted: 16 June 2022
Published: 19 June 2022
Over the past several years, there has been an increasing importance placed on clinical presentation as part of a diagnosis of pancreatitis, and yet there is comparatively little data investigating the full array of clinical signs that may be seen in dogs with pancreatitis. Our study showed that dogs with increased pancreatic lipase immunoreactivity concentrations could display a wide range of clinical signs, which may be related to pancreatitis or a concurrent disease. Non-specific clinical signs, such as anorexia, were prevalent. Additionally, overt abdominal pain was infrequently reported, and veterinarians should be cautious in ruling out pancreatitis due to a lack of abdominal pain alone. Additionally, limited data is available on potential risk factors for pancreatitis in dogs; this information could be important in the development of disease prevention strategies. In our study, the most common concurrent disease was hepatobiliary abnormalities. Additional studies are needed to determine whether this is a causative or associative relationship. Drug use reflected common prescribing practices, and anti-epileptic drug use was low despite prior studies documenting clear associations between phenobarbital and potassium bromide and drug-associated pancreatitis. Adult maintenance diets, in addition to human foods and dog treats, were commonly fed prior to the development of an increased pancreatic lipase concentration.