Amatoxins are the causative agent of mushroom hepatotoxicosis and can affect multiple organ systems but primarily target the liver. Initial signs (eg, vomiting, lethargy, fever, hypoglycemia) are not pathognomonic and can be mistaken for other conditions (eg, anaphylaxis, sepsis, other causes of acute hepatic failure), especially when ingestion is not suspected or witnessed. Presumptive diagnosis is generally based on patient history, clinical signs, and changes in the serum chemistry profile; however, an inexpensive point-of-care lateral flow immunoassay for amanitin detection in canine urine is commercially available.
This case study was the first to report diagnosis of amatoxicosis via point-of-care lateral flow immunoassay in a dog prior to treatment. The patient made a full recovery and was discharged 4 days after hospitalization. Early diagnosis can help guide treatment decisions; additional studies are needed to determine whether survival rates improve with early detection.