Chlamydophila psittaci in a Catalina macaw
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A 16-month-old female Catalina macaw was presented for chronic weight loss and anemia. On physical examination, emaciation and severe hepatosplenomegaly was evident. Biliverdinuria and elevated bile acids were supportive of liver disease. Non-regenerative anemia (PCV 21%) and a polyclonal gammopathy indicated chronic inflammation and antigenic stimulation. Rare macrophages containing structures compatible with Chlamydophila were seen on cytology of a splenic aspirate; however, too few organisms were visualized to make a definitive diagnosis and special stains were unrewarding. Chlamydophila psittaci PCR was negative—a false negative result was suspected due to inhibition of shedding by enrofloxacin treatment, or to intermittent shedding which is typical of chlamydiosis. A guarded prognosis was given. The patient was treated with doxycycline for a total of 28 days. Six weeks after initiation of treatment, the macaw’s packed cell volume was within normal limits (42%, reference range 40-50).
Journal / Series
Seminar SF610.1 2013