Is EPI in dogs genetic?

Abstract. Background: Several studies have revealed that exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is an inherited disease in German Shepherd Dogs (GSDs). Pedigree analyses have suggested an autosomal recessive inheritance model.

Is Epi hereditary?

EPI can be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors, such as alcohol and tobacco use. Genetic variants can also cause or increase the risk for conditions which in turn, can cause EPI.

What is the most common cause of EPI in dogs?

The most common cause of EPI in dogs is pancreatic acinar atrophy. The severity of this condition ranges from subclinical disease to a complete absence of secretory capacity. 2 Pancreatic acinar atrophy is thought to be an immune-mediated condition that begins with lymphocytic pancreatitis.

Does Epi run in families?

This is the most common cause of EPI in adults. It happens when the pancreas has been inflamed for a long time. This can damage the organ and its enzymes. Heavy alcohol use and smoking cause chronic pancreatitis, but some types of it also run in families.

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Is Pancreatic Insufficiency hereditary?

It can be caused by underlying genetic factors or non-genetic environmental factors (e.g., alcohol abuse, infection or trauma) or a combination of both. Pancreatitis is usually categorized as hereditary, familial or idiopathic.

Does Epi ever go away?

The pancreas works normally, but because of inflammation and damage to the intestines, it may not secrete enzymes in the way it should. If you switch to a gluten-free diet, however, EPI resulting from celiac disease usually will go away.

What does EPI poop look like?

Foul-smelling, greasy stools (steatorrhea)

The undigested fat that passes through the digestive system may cause oily or greasy-looking stools. These stools may also smell really bad, float, and be difficult to flush. Not all people experience steatorrhea, but it is the most common sign of EPI.

How can I treat my dogs EPI at home?

Highly digestible, low fat diets together with pancreatic enzyme replacement (Viokase®, Pancreazyme®, Pank-Aid) will usually stabilize the condition. Cobalamin (vitamin B12) supplementation may be considered by your veterinarian when hypocobalaminemia is documented.

How serious is EPI in dogs?

In time, EPI can lead to severe malnutrition because affected dogs, while eating normally, may not be able to digest and absorb sufficient nutrients – namely vitamins B12 (cobalamin), folate (another B vitamin), E and K (Williams, 1996) – due to the role of the pancreatic duct cells in secretion of bicarbonate and …

What is the best food to give a dog with EPI?

Because most animals with EPI are fed a relatively low-fat diet, the addition of certain fatty acids and special fat sources called medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) may be beneficial. These MCTs are more readily absorbed by animals with EPI and can be used in the body more efficiently.

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What foods to avoid if you have EPI?

Taking enzyme supplements allows most people with EPI to eat a diet with normal, healthy fat levels. When choosing meals, remember not all fats are created equal. Make sure you’re getting enough essential fats. Avoid highly processed foods and those high in trans fat, hydrogenated oils, and saturated fat.

Is Epi an autoimmune disease?

Autoimmune diseases, such as lupus or a rare condition called autoimmune pancreatitis, which can cause the body’s immune system to attack the pancreas, leading to pancreatic disease and, in some cases, EPI, according to a 2015 study in the Journal of Rheumatic Diseases and Treatment.

What are the symptoms of EPI in dogs?

Dogs and cats with EPI due to other causes are usually middle-aged to older and can be of any breed. Clinical signs most commonly reported are polyphagia, weight loss, and loose stools. Vomiting and anorexia are observed in some patients and may be a sign of concurrent conditions rather than EPI itself.

Is Pancreatic Insufficiency curable?

While there’s no cure for EPI, your doctor will work with you to find treatments that can ease your symptoms, treat any underlying conditions, and, ultimately, improve your quality of life.

Is EPI in dogs an autoimmune disease?

Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI) is a disorder wherein the pancreas fails to secrete adequate amounts of digestive enzymes. In dogs, EPI is usually the consequence of an autoimmune disease known as pancreatic acinar atrophy.

How much does it cost to treat EPI in dogs?

Cost of Pancreatic Enzyme Replacement in Dogs

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The initial cost of tests and diagnosis of EPI can cost $150 to $300. The cost of pancreatic enzyme replacement therapy varies widely depending on the dosage required. For large dogs requiring significantly more enzyme replacement, costs are greater.

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