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  • Author or Editor: Anne-Marie Bélanger x
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Case Description—4 adult Holstein dairy cows were examined for anorexia and decreased milk production.

Clinical Findings—Clinical signs included abdominal distension, normal to decreased ruminal motility, and decreased fecal output. Hypochloremia and high BUN concentration were also noted on serum biochemical analysis. Transabdominal ultrasonography revealed abnormal thickening of the abomasum with pyloric thickening and loss of the typical layered appearance of the pyloric wall. Results of cytologic examination of fine-needle aspirates of the abnormal portion of the abomasum were compatible with a diagnosis of lymphoma in 3 cows.

Outcome—The diagnosis of lymphoma involving the abomasum was confirmed by exploratory laparotomy, necropsy, or slaughterhouse reports. Two cows were euthanatized, 1 died 5 days after the diagnosis, and 1 was sent to the slaughterhouse, but the carcass was discarded because of generalized lymphoma.

Clinical Relevance—Transabdominal ultrasonography is a noninvasive portable test that can be useful for the diagnosis of lymphomatous infiltration of the pyloric portion of the abomasum, which may result in obstruction. This can be especially useful to avoid unnecessary treatments when no typical signs of enzootic lymphoma are present. Percutaneous fine-needle aspiration of the abnormally thickened abomasal wall should be performed. These procedures can enable diagnosis of this neoplasm, which has a relatively poor prognosis, thus avoiding the unnecessary costs incurred by exploratory laparotomy.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To compare characteristics and results of 2-step laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy versus omentopexy via laparotomy in the right paralumbar fossa for the treatment of dairy cows with a left displaced abomasum (LDA).

Design—Prospective clinical trial.

Animals—253 dairy cows with an LDA.

Procedures—All cows that were treated with omentopexy (n = 101) or 2-step laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy (152) from July 2005 through December 2006 were included. Presurgical, perisurgical, and postsurgical information was recorded by attending veterinarians. Producers were interviewed by telephone 7 and 60 days after surgery regarding the response of cows to surgery. Characteristics of and responses to the 2 surgical techniques were compared.

Results—At 7 days after surgery, the 2 groups of cows were not significantly different with respect to appetite, comfort, and milk yield; at 60 days after surgery, groups were similar with respect to milk yield, cull rates, and risk of relapse of LDA. Antimicrobial treatment in response to postsurgical pyrexia was necessary in only 20.4% (31/152) of cows that were treated with 2-step laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy. Mean duration (preparation and surgery) of 2-step laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy was significantly less than that of omentopexy (36 vs 74 minutes, respectively).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of 2-step laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy and omentopexy via laparotomy in the right paralumbar fossa were not significantly different. Compared with omentopexy, laparoscopy-guided abomasopexy was performed more quickly and required postsurgical administration of antimicrobials less frequently. Although these factors may be of economic consequence to veterinarians and producers, other aspects must also be considered when choosing between techniques.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To characterize duodenal sigmoid flexure volvulus (DSFV) and determine the prognosis for affected cattle undergoing surgery.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—29 dairy cattle.

Procedures—The medical records were analyzed for history, signalment, clinical signs, medical management, surgical findings, and outcome.

Results—29 cattle were determined to have DSFV between December 2006 and August 2010. Twenty cattle had had an omentopexy or pyloropexy performed 1 day to 2 years before initial evaluation. Cattle were afebrile, tachycardic, and moderately dehydrated, with a small zone of percussion with a ping at the 10th to 12th right intercostal spaces and associated succussion. Biochemical changes were a severe hypokalemic (mean ± SD, 2.9 ± 0.5 mmol/L; median, 3.1 mmol/L; range, 2.08 to 3.92 mmol/L), hypochloremic (mean, 69.7 ± 11.1 mmol/L; median, 71.7 mmol/L; range, 49.1 to 94.1 mmol/L) metabolic alkalosis (mean total CO2, 44.5 ± 7.4 mmol/L; median, 45.3 mmol/L; range, 31.5 to 59.6 mmol/L) and hyperbilirubinemia (mean, 32.4 ± 29.0 μmol/L; median, 20.5 μmol/L; range, 7.8 to 107 μmol/L). Surgical findings for DSFV included an empty descending duodenum adjacent to a dorsally displaced and dilated cranial segment of the duodenum, distended abomasum and gallbladder, and a tight volvulus at the base of the duodenal sigmoid flexure. Manual reduction was considered successful if the descending duodenum filled after cranial duodenal massage. Twenty-two patients were successfully treated; the remaining 7 died or were euthanized within 4 days after surgery.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A condition clinically resembling abomasal volvulus but affecting the duodenal sigmoid flexure has been recognized in dairy cattle. When a focal, dorsal right-sided ping and succussion are present combined with severe hypokalemic, hypochloremic metabolic alkalosis and high bilirubin concentration, DSFV should be suspected, especially when there is a history of prior abomasal fixation. After surgical correction, the prognosis is fair to good.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association