Contrast-enhanced multidetector computed tomography to diagnose pulmonary thromboembolism in an awake dog with pyothorax

Thandeka R. Ngwenyama, Jennifer M. Herring, Mauria O'Brien, Susan K. Hartman, Kimberly A. Galloway, Robert T. O'Brien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objectives: To (1) describe the use of contrast-enhanced multidetector computed tomography (CE-MDCT) for identifying pulmonary thromboembolism (PTE) in an awake dog with pyothorax, (2) report the first documented case of PTE associated with pyothorax in veterinary medicine, and (3) review diagnostic imaging modalities and therapeutic options for PTE. Case Summary: A 5-year, 4-month-old female neutered Labrador Retriever was presented for respiratory distress secondary to a pyothorax. The dog underwent thoracic exploratory surgery in which no underlying etiology was identified. Aerobic bacterial culture grew Streptococcus canis. The patient remained hypoxemic despite thoracocentesis and surgery. CE-MDCT was performed without general anesthesia and showed luminal-filling defects in the right cranial and right and left caudal lobar primary pulmonary arteries consistent with PTE. Anticoagulant therapy using unfractionated heparin was initiated. The dog responded well and was discharged 3 days postoperatively. New or Unique Information Provided: To the authors' knowledge, this is the first reported case of PTE diagnosed in a dog with pyothorax using CE-MDCT.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)731-738
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Inflammation
  • Nonselective angiography
  • Thrombus
  • Unfractionated heparin
  • Ventilation/perfusion scintigraphy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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