Feline emphysematous gastritis in a cat with pancreatitis and secondary hepatic lipidosis

A 7 year-old female neutered domestic shorthair was presented with a 2 month history of lethargy and hyporexia progressing to anorexia. Initial diagnostics indicated pancreatitis with secondary hepatic lipidosis. Supportive care, including the placement of an esophageal feeding tube, was initiated. The feeding tube was removed traumatically by the cat and thus replaced.

The cat acutely deteriorated while hospitalized, developing marked hypersalivation and an obtunded mentation. Radiographs were taken to confirm placement of the feeding tube in case tube dislodgement was contributing to the hypersalivation; results confirmed appropriate positioning and gastric pneumatosis.

Despite intensified medical management, the patient suffered cardiopulmonary arrest 7 days after hospital admission. Post-mortem examination confirmed necrotizing gastritis with emphysema alongside segmental mucosal necrosis in the jejunum, focal pancreatic necrosis, and diffuse hepatic lipidosis. Gas in the gastric wall is a rare finding in veterinary medicine and can arise due to gastric pneumatosis or emphysematous gastritis; there are scant reports of either in feline medicine.

This report documents a case of emphysematous gastritis in a cat with concurrent pancreatitis and hepatic lipidosis. The cat developed emphysematous gastritis without undergoing gastrointestinal surgery which is currently the only reported feline predisposing factor for development. 

Feline Emphysematous Gastritis in a Cat with Pancreatitis and Secondary Hepatic Lipidosis.” Emily Fulton, et al. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. 2022 Jul 1;58(4):207-212. doi: 10.5326/JAAHA-MS-7228. 

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