Faecal Occult Blood Test

Case of the Month (Emma Scurrell October  2012)

Pneumocystis infection in a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel  

A 1-year-old male CKCS presented for tachypnoea and dyspnoea. Radiographs revealed an interstitial lung pattern. The rectal temperature was normal. A bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) was performed. 

Fig 1. Cytological findings revealed low numbers of neutrophils and macrophages and large numbers of extra- and intracellular 4-5um organisms typical of Pneumocystis spp. The red arrows point to two macrophages  which are distended by the small fungal bodies (stained with modified Wrights-Giemsa).



Final Diagnosis

Pneumocytis pneumonia 


Pneumocystis is an opportunistic fungal pathogen affecting humans and animals with impaired immunity. The entire life cycle is in the lungs and lesions are usually limited to the lungs. Any breed of dog can potentially be affected however Miniature Dachshunds and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are predisposed, suspected to be associated with underlying immunodeficiency. Affected CKCSs have been shown  to have decreased levels of IgG compared to control dogs. Diagnosis is usually made on direct visualisation of the organisms in BAL fluid or in a transthoracic lung aspirate. The organism will not culture using conventional techniques.

Previous Monthly Cases

Hypertensive Retinopathy January 2010
FIP in a cat - uncommon presentation February 2010
Phaeohyphomycosis    March 2010 
Scleral Rupture April 2010
Canine and feline epulides May 2010
Erythema multiforme in a labrador retreiver June 2010
Keloidal fibrosarcoma in a labrador retreiver July 2010
Cutaneous epitheliotropic lymphoma  August 2010 
Benign cutaneous histiocytoma  September 2010 
Iridociliary adenoma October 2010
Proliferative thrombovascular necrosis of the pinnae November 2010
Signet-ring cell carcinoma in the stomach of a dog December 2010
Cutaneous infiltrative lipoma in a labrador January 2011

Tonsillar squamous cell carcinoma February 2011
Canine orbital meningioma March 2011
"Lung-digit" syndrome in a cat April 2011
Hepatic amyloidosis in a cat May 2011
Haemophagocytic histiocytic sarcoma June 2011
Alternaria spp. infection in an immunocompromised dog July 2011
Ocular manifestation of lymphoma in a cat  August 2011
Kerion dermatophytosis in a Cocker spaniel September 2011
Subcuticular coenurus in a rabbit  October 2011
Optic nerve glioma in a dog November 2011
Malignant transformation of a viral papilloma in a dog  December 2011
Uveodermatological syndrome in an Akita
January 2012
Cutaneous angiostomatosis in a dog  February 2012
Transitional cell carcinoma in a dog  March 2012
Corneal inclusion cysts in a dog   April 2012
Extraskeletal osteosarcoma in a dog  May 2012
Subungual melanoma in a dog  June 2012
Retrobulbar grass seed in a dog   July 2012
Lungworm infection associated with hypercalcaemia in a dog  August 2012
Conjunctival melanoma in a dog  September 2012

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Faecal Occult Blood Test