Fungal pericarditis and endocarditis secondary to porcupine quill migration in a dog

Ana Costa, Sunshine Lahmers, Sabrina L. Barry, James Stanton, Joshua A Stern

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


A dog evaluated for acute onset of neurologic clinical signs was discovered to have a porcupine quill traversing the left atrium with fungal endocarditis. The dog had been quilled by a porcupine one month prior to presentation and had had several quills removed from the thoracic inlet and left dorsal shoulder areas. A new murmur was identified during the initial examination. Echocardiographic changes consistent with mitral valve endocarditis were identified, in addition to a linear, hyperechoic structure in the left atrium. A thoracic CT identified a possible mediastinal migrating foreign body tract. The foreign body was surgically removed and confirmed as a porcupine quill. Routine aerobic cultures of blood and pericardial samples resulted in growth of presumptive candidal organisms. PCR amplification and sequencing of samples from pericardial cultures identified the presence of a fungal organism, Lodderomyces elongisporus. The neurologic signs were attributed to a left-sided central vestibular lesion presumed secondary to an embolic event from infective endocarditis. After 3 months of antimicrobial and antifungal therapy the valvular changes had markedly improved and the clinical signs resolved. To the authors' knowledge, this is the first description of fungal endocarditis secondary to an intracardiac foreign body in a dog.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)283-290
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Veterinary Cardiology
Issue number4
StatePublished - Dec 1 2014
Externally publishedYes


  • Foreign body
  • Infective endocarditis
  • Intracardiac
  • Lodderomyces elongisporus
  • Mitral valve

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)
  • Physiology


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