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J Avian Med Surg [journal]
- What is your diagnosis? Sertoli cell tumor with multiorgan metastasis. [Case Reports, Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):267-9.
- Avian medicine in Latin America. [Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):258-65.
- Use of thermography and fluorescein angiography in the management of a Chilean flamingo with avascular necrosis of the wing. [Case Reports, Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):255-7.
A Chilean flamingo (Phoenicopterus chilensis) was presented to the veterinary clinic at the North Carolina Zoological Park for evaluation of acute weakness of the right wing. Results of a physical examination revealed a lack of a palpable pulse in the radial artery, which suggested occlusion or obstruction of the vessel. Radiography, thermography, and fluorescein angiography confirmed right wing injury and vascular compromise. Based on the poor prognosis for return to function associated with irreversible vascular damage, the wing was amputated. After a period of observation and treatment, the bird was returned to public exhibit.
- Positive reinforcement training facilitates the voluntary participation of laboratory macaws with veterinary procedures. [Journal Article, Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):248-54.
Psittacine birds are challenging laboratory subjects, as they are typically long-lived, very social, highly intelligent, and easily stressed. The benefits of positive reinforcement techniques in animal management have been well documented for mammalian species; however, there are few publications on such programs for birds. To demonstrate the practicality of positive reinforcement training of laboratory birds to cooperate with research procedures involving direct manipulation of individuals, 9 adult macaws (Ara species; 5 individuals and 2 pairs) were trained in 10-minute sessions, twice a day for 8 weeks. The trained behaviors were: target, stay, accept liquids from a syringe, step onto a perch, step onto a scale, allow pressing a syringe to the pectoral area (surrogate for an intramuscular injection), and step onto a towel. All individually housed birds reliably targeted, stayed, and accepted a syringe, and 4 of the 5 stepped onto a perch. One bird performed all of the behaviors. Paired birds learned advanced techniques significantly faster when trained by 2 trainers versus 1 trainer. All behaviors that were mastered during the initial phase of training were successfully transferred so that the birds would reliably perform for the husbandry staff. We conclude that positive reinforcement techniques provide an effective, practical way to train laboratory macaws in behaviors useful for veterinary practice and research. Positive reinforcement used to evoke voluntary participation in procedures will help reduce stress associated with capture and restraint and improve welfare for laboratory parrots.
- Mycobacterium marinum infection in a blue-fronted Amazon parrot (Amazona aestiva). [Case Reports, Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):239-47.
A blue-fronted Amazon parrot (Amazona aestiva) was presented with a granuloma involving the proximal rhinotheca and extending into the rostral sinuses. Mycobacterium marinum was diagnosed based on results of biopsy and culture. Treatment was initiated with clarithromycin, rifampin, and ethambutol, but the bird died 4 months after the onset of antimicrobial therapy. Additional granulomas were found in the left lung and liver on postmortem examination. Mycobacterial isolation on postmortem samples was unsuccessful. This is the first report of Mycobacterium marinum in a bird.
- Discospondylitis caused by Staphylococcus aureus in an African black-footed penguin (Spheniscus demersus). [Case Reports, Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):232-8.
A 22-year-old female African black-footed penguin (Spheniscus demersus), housed indoors with other African and rockhopper penguins, was presented acutely with lethargy, ataxia, and hind limb weakness after a molt. The penguin would assume a hunched position and, when resting, sat on its hocks or lay on its keel. Physical and neurologic examination revealed hind limb paraparesis, proprioceptive deficits, and tiptoe walking. Results of a complete blood cell count and biochemical analysis revealed mild heterophilic leukocytosis, anemia, mild hypoalbuminemia, hypokalemia, and hyperuricemia. Results of whole-body radiographs and coelioscopy were unremarkable. Two computed tomographies of the spine at a 3-month interval revealed a lesion at the mobile thoracic vertebra proximal to the synsacrum with associated spinal cord compression. The penguin was treated with itraconazole, doxycycline, and meloxicam, and it initially improved with return to near normal gait and behavior. However, 5 months after the onset of clinical signs, the penguin was euthanatized after a relapse with worsening of the neurologic signs. Postmortem and histopathologic examination revealed focal granulomatous discospondylitis at the penultimate mobile thoracic vertebra, with intralesional bacteria from which Staphylococcus aureus was cultured.
- An outbreak of Chlamydophila psittaci in an outdoor colony of Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus). [Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):225-31.
An outbreak of Chlamydophila psittaci occurred in an outdoor colony of 63 Magellanic penguins (Spheniscus magellanicus) at the San Francisco Zoo. Affected penguins presented with inappetence, lethargy, and light green urates. Hematologic and serum biochemical findings were consistent with chronic inflammation. Penguins did not respond to initial supportive and antimicrobial therapy, and 3 died. Necropsy results of the 3 birds revealed hepatomegaly and splenomegaly, and histologic lesions included necrotizing hepatitis, splenitis, and vasculitis. Chlamydophila psittaci infection was confirmed by results of Gimenez staining, immunohistochemistry, and tissue polymerase chain reaction assay. As additional birds continued to present with similar clinical signs, the entire colony of penguins was prophylactically treated with a 30-day minimum course of doxycycline, administered orally or intramuscularly or as a combination of both. Despite treatment, 9 additional penguins died during a 3-month period. Pathologic results from these birds revealed renal and visceral gout (n = 4), cardiac insufficiency (n = 2), sepsis from a suspected esophageal perforation (n = 2), and no gross lesions (n = 1). During the outbreak, 4 birds presented with seizures, 5 developed dermatitis, and nearly 90% of birds in the colony showed severe keratoconjunctivitis, believed to be related to drug therapy with doxycycline. We report the clinical and pathologic features of Chlamydophila psittaci infection in an outdoor colony of penguins and the associated challenges of treatment.
- Measuring the level of agreement between a veterinary and a human point-of-care glucometer and a laboratory blood analyzer in Hispaniolan Amazon parrots (Amazona ventralis). [Evaluation Studies, Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):221-4.
Although abnormalities in blood glucose concentrations in avian species are not as common as they are in mammals, the inability to provide point-of-care glucose measurement likely results in underreporting and missed treatment opportunities. A veterinary glucometer that uses different optimization codes for specific groups of animals has been produced. To obtain data for a psittacine bird-specific optimization code, as well as to calculate agreement between the veterinary glucometer, a standard human glucometer, and a laboratory analyzer, blood samples were obtained from 25 Hispaniolan Amazon parrots (Amazona ventralis) in a 2-phase study. In the initial phase, blood samples were obtained from 20 parrots twice at a 2-week interval. For each sample, the packed cell volume was determined, and the blood glucose concentration was measured by the veterinary glucometer. The rest of each sample was placed into a lithium heparin microtainer tube and centrifuged, and plasma was removed and frozen at -30 degrees C. Within 5 days, tubes were thawed, and blood glucose concentrations were measured with a laboratory analyzer. The data from both procedures were used to develop a psittacine bird-specific code. For the second phase of the study, the same procedure was repeated twice at a 2-week interval in 25 birds to determine agreement between the veterinary glucometer, a standard human glucometer, and a laboratory analyzer. Neither glucometer was in good agreement with the laboratory analyzer (veterinary glucometer bias, 9.0; level of agreement, -38.1 to 56.2; standard glucometer bias, 69.4; level of agreement -17.8 to 156.7). Based on these results, the use of handheld glucometers in the diagnostic testing of Hispaniolan Amazon parrots and other psittacine birds cannot be recommended.
- Serum protein electrophoresis by using high-resolution agarose gel in clinically healthy and Aspergillus species-infected falcons. [Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):213-20.
Serum protein electrophoresis has gained importance in avian medicine during the past decade. Interpretation of electrophoretic patterns should be based on species-specific reference intervals and the electrophoresis gel system. In this study, serum protein electrophoresis by using high-resolution agarose gels was performed on blood samples collected from 105 falcons, including peregrine falcons (Falco peregrinus), gyrfalcons (Falco rusticolus), saker falcons (Falco cherrug), red-naped shaheens (Falco pelegrinoides babylonicus), and hybrid falcons, that were submitted to the Dubai Falcon Hospital (Dubai, United Arab Emirates) between 2003 and 2006. Reference values were established in clinically healthy birds and compared with values from falcons infected with Aspergillus species (n = 32). Falcons with confirmed aspergillosis showed significantly lower prealbumin values, which is a novel finding. Prealbumin has been documented in many avian species, but further investigation is required to illuminate the diagnostic significance of this negative acute-phase protein.
- Evaluation of three miniplate systems for fracture stabilization in pigeons (Columba livia). [Clinical Trial, Journal Article]
- J Avian Med Surg 2012 Dec; 26(4):203-12.
Bone plates are rarely used in avian fracture management for several reasons, and until recently, there was no plating system considered appropriate for use in birds with a body mass less than 500 g. To evaluate 3 different miniplate systems in avian fracture repair, 3 groups (A, B, and C) of 6 pigeons (Columba livia) each were used. The left ulna and radius of the pigeons were transected, and the ulna was stabilized. In group A, a 1.3-mm adaption plate was used. In group B, a limited contact system was created with washers that were placed between a 1.3-mm adaption plate and the bone. The intention was to reduce the compression of the periosteum and vascular damage to the bone. In group C, a 1.0-mm maxillofacial miniplate was used. Healing was evaluated with radiographs after 14 and 28 days. A flight test was conducted on day 28; the birds were then euthanatized, and the wing was dissected. Birds in group A with the adaptation plate achieved the best flight results (100%). In group B birds, no effect of the limited contact concept was visible at necropsy, and a high percentage of the screws had loosened, leading to failure (33%). The maxillofacial miniplates of group C birds were too weak and bent (100%). These results indicate that the adaption plate 1.3 met the desired requirements. To improve the system, further trials, with smaller drill bits and with screws having a smaller thread pitch, are recommended.