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J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1986 Jul 1;189(1):87-9.

Hypercalcemia associated with malignancy in a horse.


Hypercalcemia associated with malignancy was diagnosed in a 2-year-old Thoroughbred filly admitted because of weight loss and reduced exercise tolerance of approximately 2 months' duration. Laboratory findings included hypercalcemia, hypophosphatemia, anemia, marked neutrophilia with lymphopenia and eosinopenia, and normal immunoreactive parathyroid hormone concentration. At necropsy, a 53.6-kg tumor was located in the cranioventral aspect of the abdominal cavity. Gross renal lesions were not noticed. Bone tissue appeared to be normal on gross and histologic examinations. The parathyroid glands were not grossly identified at necropsy. A specific test does not exist for detection of hypercalcemia associated with malignancy. The diagnosis of hypercalcemia associated with malignancy was made on the basis of clinical history, physical examination, radiographic interpretation, laboratory findings, histologic examination, and ruling out other causes of hypercalcemia. Hypercalcemia, increased renal phosphate excretion in the presence of hypophosphatemia, absence of bone metastases, and identifying an abdominal mesenchymal tumor that may have originated from the left ovary satisfied the basic criteria for hypercalcemia associated with malignancy from a solid tumor.

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