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  • 1 University of Veterinary Medicine, István u. 2, H-1078 Budapest, Hungary
  • 2 University of Veterinary Medicine, István u. 2, H-1078 Budapest, Hungary
  • 3 University of Veterinary Medicine, István u. 2, H-1078 Budapest, Hungary

Inflammatory markers and adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH) stimulation test results may help us recognise critically ill dogs with poor disease outcome. Systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS) criteria, the fast version of the Acute Patient Physiologic and Laboratory Evaluation Score (APPLEfast), complete blood count, albumin and C-reactive protein (CRP) levels, baseline and stimulated cortisol levels and Δcortisol value were recorded in 50 client-owned dogs admitted to the Small Animal Hospital of the University of Veterinary Medicine Budapest with various inflammatory or neoplastic conditions. Increasing APPLEfast score was associated with a decreasing chance of survival (P = 0.0420). The Δcortisol value was significantly higher in SIRS dogs than in non-SIRS dogs (mean ± SD ΔcortisolSIRS: 342.5 ± 273.96; mean ± SD Δcortisolnon-SIRS: 175.3 ± 150.35; P = 0.0443). Elevated baseline or stimulated cortisol levels were associated with a higher chance of non-survival (P = 0.0135 and P = 0.0311, respectively). These data indicate that pathologically higher baseline and stimulated cortisol levels represent an exaggerated stress response in critically ill dogs, which is negatively associated with survival.

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