Severe heartworm disease in two dogs cured by an alternative therapy
Main Article Content
The objective of this paper is to describe two cases of heartworm disease in dogs presented with ascites and dyspnea. A diagnosis of mixed infection with both Dirofilaria immitis (D. immitis) and Dirofilaria repens (D. repens) was established in the first case, while D. immitis was detected in the other dog. Based on clinical, parasitological, laboratory and radiographic examinations, the diagnosis of severe stage heartworm disease (HWD) was established because both dogs were in heart failure due to HWD. An alternative therapeutic protocol with combined doxycycline and ivermectin was used as an antiparasitic treatment in both cases. No microfilariae were detected after 30 and 60 days, and no antigen to D. immitis was detected after 8 and 12 months in the first and second case, respectively. Based on the clinical examinations and parasitological testing performed, the two dogs were considered cured of HWD by this alternative therapy.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
Authors retain copyright of the published papers and grant to the publisher the right to publish the article, to be cited as its original publisher in case of reuse, and to distribute it in all forms and media. Articles will be distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution International License (CC BY 4.0).
American Heartworm Society 2018. Current canine guidelines for the prevention, diagnosis and management of heartworm (Dirofilaria immitis) infection in dogs https://d3ft8sckhnqim2.cloudfront.net/images/pdf/2018-AHS-Canine-Guidelines-181114.pdf?1542248135
Bazzocchi C., Genchi C., Paltrinieri S., Lecchi C., Mortarino M., Bandi C. 2003. Immunological role of the endosymbionts of Dirofilaria immitis: the Wolbachia surface protein activates canine neutrophils with production of IL-8. Veterinary Parasitology, 117(1-2):73-83. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2003.07.013.
Bazzocchi C., Mortarino M., Grandi G., Kramer L.H., Genchi C., Bandi C., Genchi M., Sachhi L., McCall J.W. 2008. Combined ivermectin and doxycycline treatment has microfilaricidal and adulticidal activity against Dirofilaria immitis in experimentally infected dogs. International Journal of Parasitology, 38:1401-1410. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijpara.2008.03.002.
Bouchery T., Lefoulon E., Karadjian G., Nieguitsila A., Martin C. 2013. The symbiotic role of Wolbachia in Onchocercidae and its impact on filariasis. Clinical Microbiology and Infection, 19:131-140. https://doi.org/10.1111/1469-0691.12069.
ESCCAP, 2012. Control of vector-borne diseases in dogs and cats, http://www.esccap.org/ page/G5+Control+of+VectorBorne+Diseases+in+Dogs+and+Cats/29/#.VFNY8vnF98E
Genchi G., Venco L., Genchi M. 2007. Guideline for the laboratory diagnosis of canine and feline Dirofilaria infections. In: Mappe Parassitologiche 8. Naples, Veterinary Parasitology and Parasitic Diseases, pp 137-145.
Giannelli A., Antonio R., Ramos N., Traversa D., Brianti E., Annoscia G., Bastelli F., Dantas-Torres F., Otranto D. 2013. Treatment of Dirofilaria repens microfilariaemia with combination of doxycycline hyclate and ivermectin. Veterinary Parasitology, 197(3-4):702-704. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2013.05.012.
Grandi G., Quintavalla C., Mavropoulou A., Genchi M., Gnudi G., Bertoni G., Kramer L.A. 2010. Combination of doxycycline and ivermectin is adulticidal in dogs with naturally acquired heartworm disease (Dirofilaria immitis). Veterinary Parasitology, 169(3-4):347-351. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2010.01.025.
Kittleson, M.D. 1998. Heartworm infestation and disease (dirofilariasis). In: Small Animal Cardiovascular Medicine. St. Louis: Mosby.
Kosic L.S., Potkonjak A., Vidanovic D., Kozoderovic G., Vracar V., Lalosevic V. (2018). The first report of Wolbachia spp. in dogs naturally infected with Dirofilaria spp. in Serbia – preliminary results. Parasite & Vectors, 11(Suppl 1):623.
Kramer L., Simon F., Tamarozzi F., Genchi M., Bazzocchi C. 2005. Is Wolbachia complicating the pathological effects of Dirofilaria immitis infections? Veterinary Parasitology, 133(2-3):133-136. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vetpar.2005.04.011.
Savadelis M.D., Ohmes C.M., Hostetler J.A., Settje T.L., Zolynas R., Dzimianski M.T., Moorhead A.R. 2017. Assessment of parasitological findings in heartworm-infected beagles treated with Advantage Multi® for dogs (10% imidacloprid + 2.5% moxidectin) and doxycycline. Parasite & Vectors, 10:245, https://doi.org/10.1186/s13071-017-2190-9.
Spasojević Kosić Lj., Lalošević V., Simin S., Kuruca Lj., Naglić A., Vasić I. 2014. Microfilaraemia and antigenemia in dogs with natural heartworm infection treated with combination of doxycycline and ivermectin-preliminary results. In: Proceedings of the 4th European Dirofilaria and Angiostrongylus Days, Budapest, Hungary, 62.
Spasojević Kosić Lj., Lalošević V., Simin S., Kuruca Lj. 2016. Dirofilariosis and angiostrongylosis in pet and hunting dogs in Novi Sad, Vojvodina, Serbia. Archives of Veterinary Medicine, 9(2):53-62.
Ware, W. 2011. Heartworm disease. In: Cardiovascular Disease in Small Animal Medicine. London: Manson Publishing/The Veterinary Press.