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Aberrant Mesenteric Migration of Spirocerca lupi Larvae Causing Necrotizing Eosinophilic Arteritis, Thrombosis, and Intestinal Infarction in Dogs

Brenner, Ori Jacob, Botero-Anug, Ana Maria, Rojas, Alicia, Hahn, Shelley, Baneth, Gad
Veterinary pathology 2020 v.57 no.2 pp. 281-285
Spirocerca lupi, animal pathology, anorexia, arteritis, diarrhea, dogs, hemorrhage, infarction, intestines, laparotomy, larvae, mesenteric arteries, polymerase chain reaction, thrombosis, vomiting, Israel
This report presents a novel canine condition in 32 dogs in which aberrant migration of Spirocerca lupi larvae through mesenteric arteries, instead of gastric arteries, led to small or large intestinal infarction. This form of spirocercosis was first recognized in Israel in 2013 and is currently ongoing. Typical clinical signs were anorexia and weakness of 3 to 4 days and, less frequently, vomiting and diarrhea, followed by collapse, bloody diarrhea, and severe vomiting. Exploratory laparotomy showed 1 or more infarcted and often perforated intestinal segments in all cases. Microscopically, there was intestinal mucosal to transmural coagulative necrosis and mesenteric multifocal necrotizing eosinophilic arteritis, thrombosis, hemorrhage, and early fibroplasia. Third-stage S. lupi larvae were identified by morphologic features in 9 of 32 (28%) cases, and the species was confirmed by polymerase chain reaction in 4 cases. Nearly 50% of the dogs had been receiving prophylactic therapy, which did not prevent this form of spirocercosis.