Open Veterinary Journal

Open Veterinary Journal

Peer-Reviewed Journal 
ISSN 2218-6050 (Online), ISSN 2226-4485 (Print) 


Agarose cell block technique as a complementary method in the diagnosis of fungal osteomyelitis in a dog

D.S. Zanoni1,*, F. Grandi1,2, D.Q. Cagnini1, S.M.G. Bosco3 and N.S. Rocha1,2

1Laboratory of Investigative and Comparative Pathology, School of Veterinary Medicine and Animal Science, Univ. Estadual Paulista – UNESP. Botucatu, Brazil

 2Department of Pathology, Botucatu Medical School, Univ. Estadual Paulista – UNESP. Botucatu, Brazil

3Department of Microbiology and Immunology, Biosciences Institute, Univ. Estadual Paulista – UNEP, Botucatu, Brazil



A 7-year-old Labrador Retriever female dog presenting left forelimb lameness for one day was admitted to the Veterinary Hospital (UNESP-Botucatu) for clinical evaluation. Several tests, including blood and image analysis, microbiological culture and cytology of lytic areas of affected bone were made in order to establish a diagnosis. Serum biochemical profile revealed increased levels of liver enzymes, plasma globulin, creatine kinase (CK) and calcium. Hemogram revealed anemia and leukocytosis; left humerus image analysis revealed an osteolytic lesion and cytology revealed a suppurative periostitis. Differential diagnosis was a nonspecific infectious inflammatory process or osteosarcoma. Since it was not possible to achieve a definitive diagnosis and there was a highly suspicious for an infectious agent, an agarose cell block of the bone marrow fine-needle aspiration was made. The cytological examination of cell block presented similar findings as described previously. However, additional stains including periodic acid-Schiff (PAS) were positive for fungal hyphae, which rendered a diagnosis of fungal osteomyelitis due to Aspergillus spp. This case report illustrates an uncommon cause of osteomyelitis for breed that was diagnosed by an underused method in veterinary medicine.

Keywords: Aspergillosis, Bone, Cell Block, Cytology, Dog.


Cite this paper

Zanoni, D.S., Grandi, F., Cagnini, D.Q., Bosco, S.M.G. and N.SRocha, N.S. 2012. Agarose cell block technique as a complementary method in the diagnosis of fungal osteomyelitis in a dog. Open Vet. J. 2, 19-22.