Mini-Seminar on “Urinary Tract Dysfunction”
Wednesday, 18 February 2015
By: Erianto Nugroho
On February 18, 2015, West Java II Branch of the Indonesian Veterinary Medical Association (IVMA) in collaboration with PT Royal Canin held a mini seminar on urinary tract dysfunction in small animals, mainly cats and dogs, in Gumati Restaurant in Bogor. Speaker for the seminar was Dr. Neno from PT Royal Canin. The seminar was attended by 35 practicing veterinarians. Dr. Erianto Nugroho, also a small animal practitioner based in Bogor, was sent by the Center for Indonesian Veterinary Analytical Studies (CIVAS) to attend the seminar.
In the seminar, the speaker talked about diagnosis, management, and treatment of urinary tract problems in small animals. Risk factors to urinary tract dysfunctions were breed, sex, age, neuter/spay status, body weight, urinary tract infection, urine pH, medication and the environment. Miniature Schnauzer, Bichon Frise, Poodle, Yorkshire Terrier and Shi Tzu dog breeds are predisposed to this condition. In cats, Burmese and Persian breeds are most susceptible. Males are more likely to suffer the condiction than females and vulnerable ages are 6 to 8 years old. The formation of crystals and stones, such as struvite and oxalate, in the urinary tract is one of the main manifestations. Crystals by definition is the precipitation of metabolites, particularly minerals, whereas stones/uroliths/calculus is a solid and hard augmentation of crystals.
Symptoms include increased urination frequency (pollakiuria), decreased urine volume (stranguria), excessive licking of the genitals, reddish urine (hematuria), urine found outside the sandbox, and lack of appetite. Not all symptoms are attributable to urinary stones. Differential diagnosis include inflammation of the bladder (cystitis) due to infection, idiopathic cystitis, and tumor. A marked increase of Calcium Oxalate (CaO3) in cats and dogs was observed between 1981 and 2013.
Treatment of urinary tract dysfunction differs according to stage. If the condition was discovered early or a first occurrence, the patient should be subjected to urolith analysis, USG and blood analysis. The client should be educated on environmental management, increasing the pet’s water intake and proper diet. In reoccurences, aside from laboratory testing, therapy given should address the cause specifically and include diet change, environmental enrichment and drugs if necessary. Reoccurences typically happen because not all uroliths have been expelled. Immediate medical actions include pain relief, installing a catheter, open surgery and lithotripsy (laser, shockwave).
The aim of environmental manipulation is to reduce stress. This includes managing the amount, location, cleaning and depth of litter boxes/trays. Regular exercise and feeding of animals is also important. In cats, avoiding contact with other cats might be necessary.