Cornell University Hospital for Animals


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Endoscopic samples inform treatment

Briko suffered with chronic bloody diarrhea for a full year. Initial efforts to control the situation included diet modifications and various drugs, none of which relieved Briko’s condition. When he presented to CUHA, defecating seemed painful and he had progressively been losing weight. At Cornell, Briko had a colonoscopy, which revealed a thickened, irregular, inflamed colon. Endoscopic biopsies were characterized by severe chronic diffuse histiocytic, lymphoplasmacytic, and neutrophilic inflammation and ulceration. Fluorescent in Situ Hybridization techniques were used to look for invasive bacteria and revealed that Briko had granulomatous colitis associated with E. coli. E. coli was cultured from Briko’s colon and antimicrobial susceptibility testing was performed to guide treatment. Although an uncommon type of inflammatory bowel disease, Granulomatous colitis associated with E. coli is most often encountered in young Boxers and French bull dogs, like Briko. Dogs with this disease require aggressive antimicrobial therapy for at least six weeks. Briko’s colitis responded well to this treatment. Bacteria are increasingly implicated in inflammatory bowel disease and specialized techniques to enable their detection are available at Cornell (

Sometimes, the key is inside ...

One of the least invasive ways to diagnose conditions affecting internal organs is with endoscopy. Without the aid of an endoscope, problems associated with the intestines, esophagus, stomach, and colon, for example, can only be diagnosed with exploratory surgery that requires anesthesia and the potential for extended recovery periods. Endoscopy can also be used to visualize and acquire samples from the trachea and upper lung bronchial passages. In some cases, foreign bodies which have been inhaled or ingested may also be removed with the endoscope, eliminating the need for surgery.

Veterinarians at the Cornell University Hospital for Animals have access to some of the finest endoscopy equipment available, including:

  • Slimline large-channel endoscopes that allow our clinicians to pass specialized endoscopic instruments through endoscopes that are reduced in size for our smaller patients.
  • Our new portable endoscopy system allows endoscopes to be attached to a laptop-sized processor and light source, providing easy maneuverability within the teaching hospital. This is particularly useful in surgery or for patients who cannot be moved to the endoscopy suite.
  • Wireless capsule endoscopy provides high- quality imaging throughout the entire GI tract without requiring anesthesia. Each single-use “Endo Capsule” made by Olympus employs a tiny camera that takes pictures all the way through the digestive system and transmits data wirelessly to a receiver worn by the patient.

Endoscopies are handled through the Hospital’s Small Animal Medicine section, with Dr. Kenneth Simpson coordinating this service. Please consult your veterinarian to discuss possible diagnostic testing through endoscopic procedures. To schedule an appointment through the endoscopy service, please call 607-253-3060.

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