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October 2012

Cow: Kidney, embolic nephritis, severe, acute, suppurative and necrotizing, multifocal to coalescing

History: Cattle, Holstein Friesian, 3 years, female

Diagnosis: Kidney: embolic nephritis, severe, acute, suppurative and necrotizing, multifocal to coalescing

Description: Macroscopically, both kidneys were enlarged and had multifocal, yellowish, raised foci on the surface and the cortical cut section, but without involvement of the renal medulla or pelvis.

Comments: Clinically, the cow had dripping urine release. Enlargement of the left kidney was apparent by rectal exploration. Blood analysis showed marked uremia and leukocytosis. Necropsy revealed a severe embolic nephritis of both kidneys without signs of ascending pyelonephritis. Histologically, the renal lymph nodes showed a marked, suppurative lymphadenitis. Bacteriological examination of the kidney yielded Escherichia coli, an agent commonly isolated from kidneys of calves affected by “white-spotted kidney” disease. In the present case, the cow also had severe, necrotizing endometritis that may have led to the suspected septicemic spread.

Picture by: Anja Meyer, Department of Veterinary Pathology, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany

Author: Anja Meyer, Department of Veterinary Pathology, Freie Universität Berlin, Germany