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Vet Clin Pathol. 2013 Mar;42(1):4-10. doi: 10.1111/vcp.12021. Epub 2012 Dec 31.

Significance of mastocytemia in cats.

Author information

1
Department of Pathobiology, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, PA 19104, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

In cats, mastocytemia is considered to be confined to animals with mast cell tumors (MCT), whereas in dogs it is associated with diverse diseases.

OBJECTIVE:

The objective of this retrospective study was to investigate the diagnostic and prognostic significance of mastocytemia in cats.

METHODS:

All blood smears and buffy coat (BC) smears on which mast cells were identified over a 6-year period were retrospectively reviewed and mast cells counted. Mastocytemic cats were classified based on their clinical diagnosis.

RESULTS:

Mastocytemia was identified on 40 blood smears and 13 BC smears from 33 cats. The incidence of mastocytemia detected in cats during routine CBCs was 0.33% (40/12,116 CBCs). Twenty-two of 33 mastocytemic cats (67%) had visceral (n = 17) or cutaneous MCT (n = 7), including 2 that had concurrent visceral and cutaneous involvement. In 3 additional cases (9%), visceral MCT was clinically suspected, but no cytologic or histopathologic evaluation of visceral organs was performed. MCT was excluded in 3 of 33 mastocytemic cats (9%) with a final diagnosis of lymphoid neoplasia (n = 2) and multiorgan hemangiosarcoma (n = 1). Five additional animals (15%) had a diagnosis other than MCT, including lymphoma (n = 2) and chronic renal failure (n = 3), but no cytologic or histopathologic evaluation of the spleen was performed. Blood smears from cats with confirmed MCT had 1-113 mast cells per smear, whereas cats in which MCT was excluded had 1-2 mast cells per smear.

CONCLUSIONS:

Data confirm that mastocytemia is rare and most commonly found in cats with visceral MCT; however, rare circulating mast cells may also be seen with neoplasms other than MCT.

PMID:
23278591
DOI:
10.1111/vcp.12021
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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