For Veterinarians: 

Clinical Announcement

March 22, 2018

Increase in Acute Leptospirosis Cases

Dear referring veterinarians,

We wanted to alert you regarding the increased number of patients with acute Leptospirosis we have been seeing over the past 6 months.  With the advent of IDEXX’s ELISAs and PCRs, we have been able to diagnose and treat these patients earlier than ever.  Many of these patients did not fit the “typical” breeds often associated with this infection, with half of these cases being Yorkshire Terriers with no known access to stagnant water. Thankfully, with hospitalization and aggressive fluid therapy and support, these patients have done well.

We wanted to take this opportunity to alert you on this matter.  Of course, there are pitfalls associated with these newer tests for Leptospirosis, and we encourage you to review the information on the IDEXX website in regards to the sensitivity and specificity of these tests as well as timing of testing in relation to disease course.  We also encourage everyone to read the article noted below, which is open to the public at the JVIM website.  Based on this study, the VMC will be adding the WITNESS test as an in-house point-of care test for Leptospirosis.  In addition, JVIM also has a consensus statement regarding Leptospirosis also open to the public.

ARTICLE: Lizer et al. Evaluation of 3 Serological Tests for Early Detection Of Leptospira-specific Antibodies in Experimentally Infected Dogs. JOURNAL OF VETERINARY INTERNAL MEDICINE. Volume 32, Issue 1, January/February 2018, Pages: 201–207.

CONSENSUS STATEMENT: Sykes et al. 2010 ACVIM Small Animal Consensus Statement on Leptospirosis: Diagnosis, Epidemiology, Treatment, and Prevention. JOURNAL OF VETERINARY INTERNAL MEDICINE. Volume 25, Issue 1, January/February 2011, Pages: 1–13.

Maureen Luschini, VMD, DACVECC Medical Director

Maureen Luschini, VMD, DACVECC Medical Director

If you have any questions about the diagnosis and treatment of Leptospirosis, please do not hesitate to reach out to the Internal Medicine Service at the VMC.  With the addition of Dr. Danielle Davignon and the return of Dr. Cortright from maternity leave, our IMed Service is back up and running at full capacity to help you and your patients 5-6 days per week.

Thanks for your continued service to the pet population in CNY!



Maureen Luschini VMD, DACVECC


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