CPD Circle

Hemangiosarcoma – Predictive Model

This free Veterinary CPD Podcast is produced by the Veterinary Journal Club and discusses a prediction model for hemangiosarcoma in dogs presenting with non traumatic hemabdomen.

Published Study: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/vec.12838 

The study was large with 219 dogs from 3 centers providing data for model construction, and 187 dogs from 2 centers providing the population for external validation. It found that a scoring system could be used to predict risk.

The authors identified 4 factors which could be used to group dogs into low risk, medium risk and high risk groups. These were body weight, plasma protein level, platelet count, and thoracic radiograph findings. Dogs presenting with non traumatic hemabdomen that were categorised as low risk had a 36% chance of being diagnosed with hemangiosarcoma on histopathology.

Those in the medium risk group had a 76% chance, and those in the high risk group had a 96% chance of having hemangiosarcoma. What are the ethical considerations when applying these models in practice? Should they influence whether owners opt for euthanasia or surgery? And how much information does abdominal ultrasound really give us in these cases?