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Routine Laboratory Findings
Parasites may or may not be visualized in blood even when animals are markedly anemic. Organisms appear during cyclic parasitemic episodes and then rapidly disappear from circulation. When visualized on the surface of infected erythrocytes they appear as small dots, chains or ringlets.
The anemia may appear nonregenerative if a precipitous decrease in hematocrit has occurred early in the disease or if other concurrent disorders (e.g., FeLV or FIV infections in cats) are present. Many infected animals are Coombs’ test positive.
Diagnosis may be made by microscopic visualization
of organisms on the surface of infected erythrocytes
but cyclic parasitemias may result in circulating
numbers of organisms that are too low for microscopic visualization. PCR analysis can be used to detect organism DNA in these animals or to identify carrier cats.
The recommended treatment is Doxycycline (5 mg/kg PO q12h) or tetracycline/oxytetracycline (20 mg/kg PO q8h) antibiotics administered for a 3 week period.
An Urban Experience

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