Cryptococcosis in seven horses



Title Cryptococcosis in seven horses
Author(s) Christopher B. Riley, J. R. Bolton, J. N. Mills, J. B. Thomas
Journal Australian Veterinary Journal
Date 1992
Volume 69
Issue 6
Start page 135
End page 139
Abstract The clinical, radiographic and post-mortem findings in 6 horses with cryptococcal pneumonia and one horse with an abdominal cryptococcal granuloma are described. In pulmonary cryptococcosis, the lesions were either diffuse and multiple, with bilateral lung involvement, or localised mainly to the dorsocaudal region of one lung. The cases of diffuse multiple cryptococcosis were thought to be associated with haematogenous spread of the fungus after gastrointestinal infection and dissemination from regional lymph nodes. The localised form of the disease was thought to have been associated with inhalation of cryptococci. In all cases of pulmonary cryptococcosis, encapsulated yeast-like organisms were demonstrated in Wright's-stained sediment of tracheal washes. In the horse with the abdominal granuloma, cryptococci were present in a fine needle aspirate sample. Isolates of Cryptococcus neoformans var gattii were recovered from 2 of the 5 horses in which cultures were attempted. In addition to a history of previous illness that may have predisposed to infection, most horses in this report had been in areas in which Eucalyptus camaldulensis, or the closely related E rudis, were growing. In humans, an epidemiological relationship between E camaldulensis and infection with C neoformans var gattii has been suggested. Cases of equine cryptococcosis carry a poor prognosis and treatment was not attempted in any of these cases.

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