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Flashcards in Infectious Dz - Blood Borne 1 Deck (52)
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What type of parasite is Babesia?

an intra-erythroyctic protozoan parasite of the Apicomplexa phylum


What Babesia species infects dogs?

Babesia canis vogeli and Babesia gibsoni


Is Babesia canis vogeli a large or a small babesia species?



What is the vector for Babesia canis vogeli?

Brown dog tick


What breed of dog is predisposed to Babesia canis vogeli infection?



What breed is predisposed to Babesia gibsoni infection?

American Pit Bull Terrier


Is Babesia gibsoni a large or small Babesia species?

small Babesia species


What Babesia species affect cats?

Babesia felis, Babesia cati, and Babesia leo


How is Babesia transmitted?

Tick vectors, fighting, congenital transplacental transmission, and blood transfusions


Is Babesiosis acute or chronic? Uncomplicated or severe?

all of the above


What clinical signs are associated with uncomplicated Babesiosis?

Anorexia, lethargy, weakness, pyrexia, and weight loss

Sometimes - jaundice, mucosal pallor, and urine discoloration


What disease processes are associated with uncomplicated Babesiosis?

Thrombocytopenia and anemia


What type of thrombocytopenia do Babesia infected patients have?

Immune-mediated thrombocytopenia - do not bleed in this condition


What types of anemia can Babesia infected patients get?

Regenerative, hemolytic, and immune-mediated


What causes the anemia in patients infected with Babesia?

Direct RBC injury by the Babesia parasites


What are the clinical features of severe Babesiosis?

Severe sepsis-like syndrome with multiple organ dysfunction

Acute renal failure

Neurologic Complications


Acute respiratory distress syndrome


What will a CBC show in patients with Babesiosis?

Thrombocytopenia, regenerative anemia, +/- autoagglutination, Coombs' positive, and spherocytes


What will a chemistry panel show in patients with Babesiosis?

Nothing pathognomanic - hyperglobulinemia and mildly increased liver enzymes


What will a urinalysis show in Babesiosis patients?

Variable - Bilirubinuria, hemoglobinuria, and proteinuria


What is the best way to diagnose Babesia?

A combination of microscopy, serology, and PCR


What is the specificity and sensitivity of Cytology for Babesiosis?

highly specific, but not very sensitive


What is the serology test do you do in Babesia patients? Why might it not be beneficial as a test alone?

Immunofluorescent antibody assays (IFA) on serum

Not all dogs will have an antibody response, especially early in disease


What is the most sensitive test that can be done do diagnose Babesia?



What is the treatment of choice for Babesia canis vogeli?

Imidocarb diproprionate


What is the most effective treatment for Babesia gibsoni?

Atovaquone and azithromycin


What supportive care is given patients with Babesiosis?

Packed red blood cell transfusion, intravenous crystalloid fluids, +/- glucocorticoids


What is the prognosis for Babesiosis?

good with early diagnosis and appropriate treatment


How is Babesiosis prevented?

Tick control, prevent dog fighting, and screen your blood donors with serology and PCR


A 4 year FS Pit Bull presents to you with a week long history of anorexia and lethargy. Her physical exam is unremarkable other than a palpable spleen. CBC shows a moderate thrombocytopenia, but is otherwise normal. You think you see red cell inclusions that remind you of Babesia that you saw in your VCS 444 lectures. You think:

a. This cannot be Babesia as she is not anemic

b. You are ready to treat her for Babesia as the treatment for Babesia is the same regardless of the infecting Babesia species

c. It would be prudent to send off blood for Babesia PCR and to test for other vector borne disease that she could be co-infected with

d. You better have a heart to heart talk with the owners as most Babesia infections in the US progress to severe form that is almost always fatal.

c. It would be prudent to send off blood for Babesia PCR and to test for other vector borne disease that she could be co-infected with


13 YO MC Pit bull with dark colored urine. He was diagnosed with a UTI and prescribed enrofloxacin. The next day he was very weak and diagnosed with anemia.

Based on the breed and blood smear, what do you think Boz is infected with?

a. Babesia canis

b. Babesia gibsoni

b. Babesia gibsoni

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