Echocardiographic parameters in african white-bellied pangolins (phataginus tricuspis) without cardiac disease

Karisa N. Tang, Dana Buoscio, Jennifer Langan, Michael J. Adkesson, Sathya Chinnadurai, Copper Aitken-Palmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Relatively little is known about pangolin care and physiology, and it has become increasingly important to have a better understanding of normal health parameters for evaluation of free-ranging, rehabilitating, and managed populations. Echocardiograms were performed on six African white-bellied pangolins (Phataginus tricuspis) under professional care at a single institution. Because of the propensity of pangolins to roll up with only thick keratinized scales exposed, the pangolins were anesthetized with either isoflurane or sevoflurane. All echocardiograms were performed and evaluated by a board-certified cardiologist. None of the pangolins had any evidence of prior cardiac disease. All standard measurements were obtained. Four pangolins (66.7%) had trace to mild mitral regurgitation, six (100%) had trace to mild tricuspid regurgitation, and two (33.3%) had trace to mild pulmonic regurgitation. All examinations were determined to be normal, with no evidence of valvular structural abnormalities, cardiac dysfunction, chamber enlargement, or cardiac hypertrophy. This report broadens understanding of normal echocardiogram parameters in pangolin species and contributes techniques and baseline data for veterinarians caring for these vulnerable populations.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)604-610
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 23 2019


  • African pangolin
  • Cardiac
  • Echocardiography
  • Manis tricuspis
  • Phataginus tricuspis

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Animal Science and Zoology
  • General Veterinary


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