Tracheal pseudomembrane secondary to aspiration pneumonia in a 6-year-old Ragdoll

JFMS Open Rep. 2020 Oct 15;6(2):2055116920959975. doi: 10.1177/2055116920959975. eCollection 2020 Jul-Dec.


Case summary: A 6-year-old female spayed Ragdoll presented with a 4-day history of acute onset non-productive retching, coughing and anorexia. A complete blood count, serum biochemistry, thoracic radiography and abdominal ultrasound were performed. Initially, aspiration pneumonia was suspected owing to an alveolar lung pattern in the right cranial ventral lung lobes seen on radiographs. The cat did not improve with empirical antibiotic therapy. Bronchoscopy and bronchoalveolar lavage were performed. An intraluminal tracheal mass was identified and removed via endoscopic guidance and gentle traction. Histopathology results were consistent with a fibrinous tracheal pseudomembrane. The cat was concurrently diagnosed with Pseudomonas aeruginosa pneumonia, which was confirmed on bronchoalveolar lavage. Pseudomonas aeruginosa was also cultured within the pseudomembrane. The cat was received antimicrobial therapy for his Pseudomonas pneumonia. In humans, fibrinous tracheal pseudomembranes occur uncommonly as a complication following endotracheal intubation and rarely due to infectious organisms. As there was no prior history of endotracheal intubation, the development of fibrinous tracheal pseudomembrane in this cat was suspected to be secondary to Pseudonomas aeruginosa aspiration pneumonia.

Relevance and novel information: The present case report is the first to describe a tracheal pseudomembrane in a cat. Bronchoscopy-guided gentle traction and subsequent removal of the tracheal pseudomembrane resulted in a complete resolution of the clinical signs.

Keywords: Respiratory disease; aspiration pneumonia; bronchoscopy; tracheal pseudomembrane.

Publication types

  • Case Reports