Heartworm Removal Guided by Transesophageal Echocardiography in a Dog with Naturally Acquired Caval Syndrome

J Am Anim Hosp Assoc. Mar/Apr 2017;53(2):96-100. doi: 10.5326/JAAHA-MS-6424. Epub 2016 Nov 14.


A 14 mo old shih tzu was referred for dyspnea, hemoptysis, and hematuria. Heartworm disease with caval syndrome was diagnosed by laboratory tests, thoracic radiography, and transthoracic echocardiography. The minimally invasive heartworm removal procedure was performed using flexible alligator forceps guided by transesophageal echocardiography. The procedure was successfully performed removing over 94% of heartworms displayed echocardiographically without any intraoperative complication.

Publication types

  • Case Reports

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cardiac Surgical Procedures / veterinary*
  • Dirofilariasis / diagnostic imaging
  • Dirofilariasis / surgery*
  • Dog Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Dog Diseases / parasitology*
  • Dog Diseases / surgery
  • Dogs
  • Echocardiography, Transesophageal / veterinary*
  • Fatal Outcome
  • Male