- You can quote me
I am so very sorry to hear that he didn't make it. He tried, and you both did a great job. As Julian says, bless you for your efforts. He knew good care and love at the end, at least.
Godspeed and safe passage, little one. We will remember you.
History: This 2 year old [I actually think he was only about 6-8 months old, but that's only because of his size.], male, captive bred guinea pig has a history of polyuria and swollen joints. The guinea pig had profound hypoglycemia and elevated liver enzymes. Blood urea nitrogen was also elevated. Radiographs were unremarkable. The cavy died in the emergency clinic.
Clinical Diagnosis: Hepatic disease.
Gross: Received for necropsy is the fresh carcass of a male guinea pig in poor physical condition. The carcass is emaciated, and marked dependant edema is noted along the sternum, ventral abdomen, and in the subcutis of the legs and cervical region. Slight angular wear is noted in the ventral incisors. All muscle is markedly atrophied. Peripheral lymph nodes are mildly enlarged. A subcutaneous abscess is noted over the sternum. Serosanguineous effusions are noted in the abdomen (3 ml.) and thorax (2 ml.). The lungs are consolidated and sink in formalin. Pinpoint white and black foci are noted in the parenchyma. Areas of crusting dermatitis are noted along the ventrum. Unilateral subcutaneous cervical hemorrhage is noted (venipuncture site). Representative sections of all the tissues are processed in formalin for histopathology. Select tissues are frozen for future reference. Aerobic cultures of the lung are obtained.
Heart: The right ventricle has extensive fibrosis. Remaining sections of the heart have mild multifocal myocardial necrosis.
Lung: Diffusely, the pulmonary parenchyma, is markedly congested, alveoli are edematous and contain histiocytes, and pneumocytes are mildly hypertrophied. Large accumulations of hemosiderin laden macrophages are noted throughout the parenchyma, particularly around blood vessels and bronchioles. Some areas of fibrin thrombosis are also noted.
Skeletal muscle: Most sections have mild rhabdomyolysis or atrophy of myofibers.
Liver: Hepatic cords are atrophic, bile ducts are mildly hyperplastic, blood vessels are congested, and a few areas of periportal coagulative necrosis of hepatocytes are noted.
Brain: Some of the blood vessels and neuropil are mineralized in the midbrain adjacent to the hippocamus.
Stomach: A mild infiltrate of lymphocytes is noted multifocally in the lamina propria.
Adipose: Adipose stores are severely atrophic.
Kidney: The renal sections have severe sclerotic change in the glomeruli and interstitium with associated renal tubular dilatation, accumulations of necrotic cell debris within renal tubule, and occasional glomerular fibrin thrombi.
Lymph node: One of the lymph nodes has two microgranulomas oriented around fragments of unidentified parasite ova.
Blood vessels: Some of the blood vessels in the lung and heart and the great vessels at the cardiac outflow tract have mild arteriosclerotic change.
Skin: Several sections of the skin have moderate epidermal hyperplasia and hyperkeratosis with erosions and superficial bacterial colonization.
Subcutis: A subcutaneous abscess is present (sternal region) and comprised of degenerative neutrophils and necrotic cell debris. The abscess extends into the sternal skeletal muscle.
The following tissues are histiologically within normal limits: testicle, seminiferous vesicle, pancreas, salivary glands, adrenal, thyroid, parathyroid, intestine, trachea, and esophagus.
1. Right ventricular myocardial fibrosis.
2. Marked chronic passive congestion with hemosiderosis, lung.
3. Congestion with coagulative necrosis and biliary hyperplasia, liver.
4. Severe atrophy of fat.
5. Marked nephrosclerosis with glomerular fibrin thrombi.
6. Parasite microgranulomas, one lymph node.
7. Chronic hyperplastic and hyperkeratotic dermatitis, sternum.
8. Sternal abscess.
Comment: Histologic changes are consistent with left- and right-sided cardiac insufficiency. Histiologic changes were particularly severe in the right ventricle, although I suspect there were left ventricle lesions that were also present but not represented in the sections based on the changes in the lung. Cardiac insufficiency also accounts for the effusions noted in the abdominal cavity and thoracic cavity. This animal also had advanced nephrosclerosis, particularly for its age. I suspect that previous episodes of hypoxia and infraction contributed significantly to these degenerative disease processes. The changes are not characteristic of congenital renal dysplasia or primary infectious process in the kidney. The renal insufficiency may also have contributed to the effusions. An interesting feature in this case is the parasite migration in one of the lymph nodes. This is a rare lesion for a cavy. Parasites are degenerative and could not be positively identified, although they most closely resemble nematode larvae. The sternal abscess is likely an extension of the dermatitis. The dermatitis appears to be due to bacterial infection, although a similar lesion also occurs with acariasis in this species. No mites were seen in several sections of the skin. [I did treat him for mites, so that is probably why they found none.] Microscopic examination of the decalcified tissues and culture results are pending with an addendum to follow.
Addendum: Aerobic culture of the lung reveals a coagulase positive Staphylococcus sp. sensitive to all antibiotics in the screen, including
Pathologist: Michael M. Garner, DVM, Dipl. ACVP
My question is, since Fuzzy had a heart condition which could be genetic, I need to prepare adopters of any of the pigs he is likely related to with that there is a possibility they might develop a heart condition.
What information should I give them in terms of what to watch for, and what resources can I provide my vet and any adopters vet to learn more about such things.
The affected pigs would be Rebecca and her babies Sabrina and Anastasia, Poppyseed (now Annabelle - adopted, I did let her adopter know before hand), Pattycake, Kirk, Hawk (adopted - need to contact adopters), Sophie, Maisey, and possibly Harriet. I think that's all.
Any feedback on this, and on the necropsy report in general, is greatly appreciated.
If you go to:
there's a link to a thread with some possible signs of heart problems.
- Little Jo Wheek
All of my heart pigs have shown some degree of liver "irritation" or malfunction. Some eventually do also have lung changes and animals with compromised heart function we find time and time again are prone to pneumonia and URIs.