Author(s): Ludders JW, Grauer GF, Dubielzig RR, Ribble GA, Wilson JW. Renal microcirculatory and correlated histologic changes associated with dirofilariasis in dogs. Am J Vet Res. 1988 Jun;49(6):826-30.
Journal: American Journal Of Veterinary Research, Volume 49, Issue 6, Jun 1988
Nine 7-month-old Beagle dogs were inoculated with 200 third-stage larvae of Dirofilaria immitis. The development of cardiac disease secondary to heartworm infection was confirmed by thoracic radiography, echocardiography, and angiography with blood pressure measurements. The only indication of renal disease was mild-to-moderate proteinuria. The dogs were euthanatized approximately 18 months after inoculation. The mean microfilarial count in blood at the time of euthanasia was 88,700/ml, with a mean of 89 adult heartworms in the vena cavae, heart, and pulmonary arteries. The kidneys were perfused for microangiographic and correlative histologic examination of the intrarenal microvasculature and associated renal morphologic features. Angiograms of whole kidneys from 6 dogs revealed attenuation or truncation of the major renal vessels. Microangiograms of all kidney slices revealed attenuation in the microangiographic appearance of the glomerular capillaries. Histologic examination of all kidney slices revealed mild-to-intense, diffuse, chronic interstitial nephritis and generalized membranoproliferative glomerulonephritis. Microfilariae were observed within the glomerular capillaries and the medullary vessels. The microangiographic changes correlated with and were explained in part by the histologic changes in the renal parenchyma.