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Retroviruses and Cat Bite Wounds

Apr 30, 2008
Goldkamp, C. E., J. K. Levy, et al. (2008). "Seroprevalences of feline leukemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus in cats with abscesses or bite wounds and rate of veterinarian compliance with current guidelines for retrovirus testing." J Am Vet Med Assoc 232(8): 1152-8.

In this prospective study, data was collected on 967 cats being treated for bite wounds and abscesses from 134 veterinary practices in 30 states. Cats were tested for feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) at the time of presentation. Veterinarians were asked to retest cats 60 days later to determine if seronegative cats became positive after the high-risk event. The FeLV-FIV status of 96 cats was known prior to the bite wound event. At the time of treatment, 19.3% of cats were seropositive for FeLV and/or FIV. Risk factors associated with seropositive status included age (adult), gender (male), history of wounds, and outdoor access. Retesting of seronegative cats was recommended to owners of 478 cats at 54.5% of the practices. However, only 13.4% of cats were restested. Of these cats, 5.2% that were initially seronegative for FIV seroconverted. This study determined that a high proportion of cats with abscesses or bite wounds were seropositive for retrovirus infection. Unfortunately, compliance with recommendations to test cats at the time of the event or after treatment was low. Clearly, the FeLV-FIV status of cats with fight wounds should be determined at the time of treatment, and seronegative cats should be retested in 60 days.
>> PubMed abstract

Related articles:
Levy, J. K., H. M. Scott, et al. (2006). "Seroprevalence of feline leukemia virus and feline immunodeficiency virus infection among cats in North America and risk factors for seropositivity." J Am Vet Med Assoc 228(3): 371-6.
>> PubMed abstract
feline immunodeficiency virus abscess FeLV feline leukemia virus FIV bite wound

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