The effects of illness on urinary catecholamines and their metabolites in dogs
Background: Urinary catecholamines and metanephrines have been proposed as a diagnostic tool for identifying canine pheochromocytomas, but the effects of critical illness on urine concentrations of catecholamines and metanephrines is currently unknown.
Objectives: To examine the effects of illness on urine concentrations of catecholamines and metanephrines in dogs.
Animals: Twenty-five critically ill dogs and twenty-five healthy age- and gender-matched control dogs.
Methods: Prospective observational study. Urine was collected from healthy and critically ill dogs and urine concentrations of epinephrine, norepinephrine, metanephrine, and normetanephrine were measured by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) with electrochemical detection. Urinary catecholamine and metanephrine:creatinine ratios were calculated and compared between groups.
Results: Urinary epinephrine, norepinephrine, metanephrine, and normetanephrine:creatinine ratios were higher in critically ill dogs when compared to a healthy control population (P = 0.0009, P < 0.0001, P < 0.0001, and P < 0.0001 respectively).
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance: Illness has a significant impact on urinary catecholamines and their metabolites in dogs. Further investigation of catecholamine and metanephrine concentrations in dogs with pheochromocytomas is warranted to fully evaluate this test as a diagnostic tool, however the findings of this study suggest that the results may be difficult to interpret in dogs with concurrent illness.