Background: Leishmania infection in cats is being increasingly reported in endemic areas. Nevertheless, only a few clinical cases have been described in cats, and even fewer have provided information on the response to treatment and a proper follow-up. Here we report a case of feline leishmaniosis not associated with any other disease or co-infection and document its response to allopurinol treatment and long-term follow-up data. Results: A 6-year-old domestic shorthair female cat was referred for nodular blepharitis, mucocutaneous ulcerative lesions of the mouth and lymph node enlargement. The cat was moderately anaemic, hyperglobulinaemic and tested negative for feline leukaemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus. Fine needle aspirates of nodules and mucocutaneous lesions showed the presence of numerous amastigote forms of Leishmania. Leishmania infection was further confirmed by serology (IFAT test, 1:640) and real-time PCR (RT-PCR) on blood and conjunctival swabs. The cat was treated with allopurinol (20 mg/kg SID), which was clinically effective, although the cat remained Leishmania-positive in serology and RT-PCR on blood and conjunctival swabs. Allopurinol treatment was interrupted after seven months because of the healing of all lesions and lack of compliance by the owner. After two years, the cat relapsed displaying almost the same clinical signs and clinicopathological alterations. On this occasion, the parasite was isolated by culture and identified as belonging to L. infantum. Allopurinol treatment was started again but was interrupted several times because of the itching side effect observed. The cat worsened progressively and died two months after the relapse without any chance to shift the treatment to another molecule (e.g. meglumineantimoniate or miltefosine). Conclusions: Out of all documented cases of feline leishmanosis, the present case has the longest follow-up period and it is one of the few in which the parasite was isolated and identified. It further confirms the potential progression of Leishmania infection to disease in cats even in the absence of comorbidities. Veterinarians practicing in endemic areas should be aware of this susceptibility, properly include feline leishmaniosis in the differential diagnosis and propose preventative measures to those cats at risk.
|Titolo:||Treatment and long-term follow-up of a cat with leishmaniosis|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2019|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||1.1 Articolo in rivista|