Case Studies


An Adverse Reaction to a Vaccine

This was one of my early Help Line cases, before I even had a formal Help Line and shows how useful and effective prompt telephone advice can be. 

Presentation & History: Flora was a 3 month old kitten (belonging to a colleague of mine) that had a sudden onset of acute facial and neck dermatitis and systemic signs of anaemia, which started a few days after vaccination. The condition was very pruritic.

Work-up:  The vet was able to email me photos, taken on her phone, and I was able to guide her through the case work up (haematology, biochemistry, cytology and biopsies) and advise her on the best course of treatment.

The laboratory tests by themselves did not give an exact diagnosis, nor did the biopsies, because pathologists (clinical or histopathologist) can only report on what they see.  The test results and the histopathology then had to be tied up with the clinical signs to arrive at the most likely diagnosis, which is where I was able to help.  Treatment was then based on this diagnosis.  

Diagnosis: Flora was a case where the test results needed careful interpretation and the final diagnosis was a vaccine induced immune-mediated sterile granulomatous dermatitis with an immune-mediated haemolytic anaemia.   


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Outcome: She was successfully treated with immunosuppressive doses of prednisolone.

This case also highlights the need for early diagnosis and aggressive treatment for a successful outcome.

Using my online service can be very useful for these cases where urgent advice is needed, or for those cases when going to a referral centre is not possible.  For more information on this service (including pricing) see our Online Advice page

Anita Patel (April 2012)