• 1.

    Moore DM. Hematology of rabbits. In: Feldman BFZinkl JGJain NC, eds. Schalm's veterinary hematology. 5th ed. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2000;1 100–1106.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 2.

    Bentz KJBurgess BALohmann KL et al. Hepatic lobe torsion in a horse. Can Vet J 2009; 50:283286.

  • 3.

    Bhandal JKuzma AStarrak G. Spontaneous left medial liver lobe torsion and left lateral lobe infarction in a Rottweiler. Can Vet J 2008; 49;10021004.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 4.

    Downs MOMiller MACross AR, et al. Liver lobe torsion and liver abscess in a dog. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998; 212:678680.

  • 5.

    Evering WEdwards JF. Hepatic lobe deformity in a rabbit. Lab Anim (NY) 1992; 21:1416.

  • 6.

    Fitzgerald ALFitzgerald SD. Hepatic lobe torsion in a New Zealand White rabbit. Canine Pract 1992; 17(1):1619.

  • 7.

    Hamir AN. Torsion of the liver in a sow. Vet Rec 1980; 106:362363.

  • 8.

    Hinkle Schwartz SGMitchell SLKeating JH, et al. Liver lobe torsion in dogs: 13 cases (1995–2004). J Am Vet Med Assoc 2006; 228:242247.

  • 9.

    Lee KYamada KHirokawa H, et al. Liver lobe torsion in a Shihtzu dog. J Small Anim Pract 2009; 50:157.

  • 10.

    McConkey SBriggs CSolano M, et al. Liver torsion and associated bacterial peritonitis in a dog. Can Vet J 1997; 38:438439.

  • 11.

    Morin MSauvageau RPhaneuf JB, et al. Torsion of abdominal organs in sows: a report of 36 cases. Can Vet J 1984; 25:440442.

  • 12.

    Saunders RRedrobe SBarr F, et al. Liver lobe torsion in rabbits. J Small Anim Pract 2009; 50:562.

  • 13.

    Scheck MG. Liver lobe torsion in a dog. Can Vet J 2007; 48:423425.

  • 14.

    Sonnenfield JMArmbrust LJRadlinsky MA, et al. Radiographic and ultrasonographic findings of liver lobe torsion in a dog. Vet Radiol Ultrasound 2001; 42:344346.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 15.

    Swann HMBrown DC. Hepatic lobe torsion in 3 dogs and a cat. Vet Surg 2001; 30:482486.

  • 16.

    Taylor HRStaff CD. Clinical techniques: successful management of liver lobe torsion in a domestic rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) by surgical lobectomy. J Exot Pet Med 2007; 16:175178.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 17.

    Tomlinson JBlack A. Liver lobe torsion in a dog. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1983; 183:225226.

  • 18.

    Turner TABrown CAWilson JH, et al. Hepatic lobe torsion as a cause of colic in a horse. Vet Surg 1993; 22:301304.

  • 19.

    von Pfeil DJFJutkowitz LAHauptman J, et al. Left lateral and left middle liver lobe torsion in a Saint Bernard puppy. J Am Anim Hosp Assoc 2006; 42:381385.

    • Crossref
    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 20.

    Warns-Petit ES. Liver lobe torsion in an oriental small-clawed otter (Aonyx cinerea). Vet Rec 2001; 148:212213.

  • 21.

    Weisbroth SH. Torsion of the caudate lobe of the liver in the domestic rabbit (Oryctolagus). Vet Pathol 1975; 12:1315.

  • 22.

    Wenger SBarrett ELPearson GR, et al. Liver lobe torsion in three adult rabbits. J Small Anim Pract 2009; 50:301305.

  • 23.

    Wilson RBHolscher MASly DL. Liver lobe torsion in a rabbit. Lab Anim Sci 1987; 37:506507.

  • 24.

    Woolfe DTEnglish B. Torsion of the left lateral and papillary lobes of the liver in a pup—a case report. J Am Vet Med Assoc 1959; 134:458.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 25.

    Donnelly TM. Basic anatomy, physiology, and husbandry. In: Quesenberry KECarpenter JW, eds. Ferrets, rabbits and rodents clinical medicine and surgery. 2nd ed. St Louis: Saunders, 2003;139.

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation

Advertisement

Successful outcome of hepatectomy as treatment for liver lobe torsion in four domestic rabbits

Natasha J. StankeDepartment of Emergency Medicine, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Natasha J. Stanke in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM
,
Jennifer E. GrahamDepartment of Avian and Exotic Pet Medicine, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Jennifer E. Graham in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, DABVP, DACZM
,
Connie J. OrcuttDepartment of Avian and Exotic Pet Medicine, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Connie J. Orcutt in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, DABVP
,
Catherine J. ReeseDepartment of Surgery, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Catherine J. Reese in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, DACVS
,
Brian K. BretzDepartment of Surgery, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Brian K. Bretz in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, DACVS
,
Patty J. EwingDepartment of Pathology, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Patty J. Ewing in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, MS, DACVP
, and
Jessica BassechesDepartment of Diagnostic Imaging, Angell Animal Medical Center, 350 S Huntington Ave, Boston, MA 02130.

Search for other papers by Jessica Basseches in
Current site
Google Scholar
PubMed
Close
 DVM, DACVR

Abstract

Case Description—4 rabbits (1.5 to 6 years old) were evaluated at the Angell Animal Medical Center from June 2007 to March 2009 because of nonspecific clinical signs including anorexia, lethargy, and decreased fecal output.

Clinical Findings—Physical examination revealed signs of pain in the cranial portion of the abdomen, gas distention of the gastrointestinal tract, and diminished borborygmi. Serum biochemical analyses and CBCs revealed moderately to markedly high alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and alkaline phosphatase activities and mild to moderate anemia with polychromasia. Abdominal radiographic findings were nonspecific. Three of the 4 rabbits underwent abdominal ultrasonography; abnormalities in shape, size, echogenicity, and blood flow of the liver, indicative of liver lobe torsion, were detected.

Treatment and Outcome—All 4 rabbits underwent surgery, during which liver lobe torsion was confirmed and the affected liver lobe was resected. Histologic examination of sections of the excised lobe obtained from 3 of the 4 rabbits revealed severe, diffuse, acute to sub-acute hepatic ischemic necrosis. All rabbits recovered from surgery; owners reported that the rabbits were doing well 22 to 43 months after surgery.

Clinical Relevance—Liver lobe torsions in any species are rarely reported, yet 4 cases of liver lobe torsion in domestic rabbits were treated at 1 referral center in a 2-year period. In rabbits, clinical signs of this condition are nonspecific and results of additional tests, including abdominal ultrasonography and serum biochemical analysis, are necessary for diagnosis. Prompt diagnosis and hepatectomy of the affected lobe are recommended and appear to be associated with an excellent prognosis.

Abstract

Case Description—4 rabbits (1.5 to 6 years old) were evaluated at the Angell Animal Medical Center from June 2007 to March 2009 because of nonspecific clinical signs including anorexia, lethargy, and decreased fecal output.

Clinical Findings—Physical examination revealed signs of pain in the cranial portion of the abdomen, gas distention of the gastrointestinal tract, and diminished borborygmi. Serum biochemical analyses and CBCs revealed moderately to markedly high alanine aminotransferase, aspartate aminotransferase, and alkaline phosphatase activities and mild to moderate anemia with polychromasia. Abdominal radiographic findings were nonspecific. Three of the 4 rabbits underwent abdominal ultrasonography; abnormalities in shape, size, echogenicity, and blood flow of the liver, indicative of liver lobe torsion, were detected.

Treatment and Outcome—All 4 rabbits underwent surgery, during which liver lobe torsion was confirmed and the affected liver lobe was resected. Histologic examination of sections of the excised lobe obtained from 3 of the 4 rabbits revealed severe, diffuse, acute to sub-acute hepatic ischemic necrosis. All rabbits recovered from surgery; owners reported that the rabbits were doing well 22 to 43 months after surgery.

Clinical Relevance—Liver lobe torsions in any species are rarely reported, yet 4 cases of liver lobe torsion in domestic rabbits were treated at 1 referral center in a 2-year period. In rabbits, clinical signs of this condition are nonspecific and results of additional tests, including abdominal ultrasonography and serum biochemical analysis, are necessary for diagnosis. Prompt diagnosis and hepatectomy of the affected lobe are recommended and appear to be associated with an excellent prognosis.

Contributor Notes

Dr. Stanke's present address is BluePearl Veterinary Partners, 3000 Busch Lake Blvd, Tampa, FL 33614.

Address correspondence to Dr. Stanke (njstanke@dvm.com).