Anaplasma (A.) phagocytophilum, the etiological agent of canine granulocytic anaplasmosis, is capable of inciting moderate to severe clinical disease in a variety of mammals and is endemic in the upper midwest. The purpose of this study was fourfold: to describe the range of clinical signs in dogs seropositive to A. phagocytophilum; to examine the prevalence of immune-mediated hemolytic anemia (IMHA) in this population; to evaluate whether specific clinical signs were associated with coexposure to Borrelia (B.) burgdorferi in actively infected dogs; and to determine whether clinical response to doxycycline was complete in treated dogs. Medical records of dogs seropositive for A. phagocytophilum were reviewed retrospectively. Peripheral blood smears were also reviewed retrospectively for granulocytic Anaplasma morulae. Lethargy (81%), inappetence (58%), and lameness (50%) were the most common clinical signs, followed by fever (46%). Thrombocytopenia was the most common laboratory abnormality, and IMHA was diagnosed in three dogs. Dogs that were thrombocytopenic and had antibodies to both A. phagocytophilum and B. burgdorferi had a median platelet count of 51,000/μL (range 20,000 to 171,000/μL), which was significantly lower than the count in dogs with antibodies only to A. phagocytophilum (P=0.04). Some dogs had an apparent relapse of clinical signs after an appropriate course of doxycycline. Testing for A. phagocytophilum by polymerase chain reaction, serum antibody assays, and/or blood smear evaluation should be considered in dogs with IMHA, cough, or epistaxis and that reside in A. phagocytophilum-endemic areas. If moderate to severe thrombocytopenia is present, testing for concurrent B. burgdorferi infection may be warranted.
Clinical Presentation of 26 Anaplasma phagocytophilum-Seropositive Dogs Residing in an Endemic Area
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Allison Wistrand Mazepa, Linda Benjamin Kidd, Karen M. Young, Lauren A. Trepanier; Clinical Presentation of 26 Anaplasma phagocytophilum-Seropositive Dogs Residing in an Endemic Area. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc 1 November 2010; 46 (6): 405–412. doi: https://doi.org/10.5326/0460405
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