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Article

Risk Factors and Clinical Presentation in Dogs with Increased Serum Pancreatic Lipase Concentrations—A Descriptive Analysis

1
Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, Michigan State University College of Veterinary Medicine, East Lansing, MI 48824, USA
2
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
Animals 2022, 12(12), 1581; https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12121581
Received: 20 May 2022 / Revised: 16 June 2022 / Accepted: 16 June 2022 / Published: 19 June 2022
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Frontiers in Canine and Feline Gastrointestinal Disease)
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.
Limited data exist regarding the full array of clinical signs seen in dogs with pancreatitis and potential risk factors for the disease. Laboratory submissions from the Gastrointestinal Laboratory at Texas A&M University were retrospectively reviewed for dogs with an increased serum pancreatic lipase immunoreactivity (cPLI) concentration (≥400 µg/L), and an internet-based survey was distributed to the attending veterinarian and/or technician on each case. The survey contained questions related to (i) clinical signs, (ii) prior gastrointestinal upset, (iii) comorbidities, (iv) pre-existing medical therapies, and (v) dietary history. One hundred and seventy (170) survey responses were recorded. The top three clinical signs reported were inappetence (62%), diarrhea (53%), and vomiting (49%). Abdominal pain was noted in only 32% of dogs, likely associated with poor pain detection. Additionally, the majority of dogs (71%) had prior episodes of gastrointestinal upset within the past 12 months, lending support for the commonality of recurrent acute pancreatitis, or acute on chronic disease. Hepatobiliary abnormalities (24%) were the most common concurrent disease, and endocrine disorders were seen in a low proportion of respondents (5–8%). Adult maintenance diets (65%), dog treats (40%), and human foods (29%) were commonly consumed by dogs prior to the discovery of increased cPLI concentration. View Full-Text
Keywords: canine; pancreatitis; cPLI; etiology; clinical signs canine; pancreatitis; cPLI; etiology; clinical signs
MDPI and ACS Style

Cridge, H.; Scott, N.; Steiner, J.M. Risk Factors and Clinical Presentation in Dogs with Increased Serum Pancreatic Lipase Concentrations—A Descriptive Analysis. Animals 2022, 12, 1581. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12121581

AMA Style

Cridge H, Scott N, Steiner JM. Risk Factors and Clinical Presentation in Dogs with Increased Serum Pancreatic Lipase Concentrations—A Descriptive Analysis. Animals. 2022; 12(12):1581. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12121581

Chicago/Turabian Style

Cridge, Harry, Nicole Scott, and Jörg M. Steiner. 2022. "Risk Factors and Clinical Presentation in Dogs with Increased Serum Pancreatic Lipase Concentrations—A Descriptive Analysis" Animals 12, no. 12: 1581. https://doi.org/10.3390/ani12121581

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