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  • Author or Editor: Barbara L. Oglesbee x
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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


To characterize prevalence and type of cardiac disease evident in psittacine birds during postmortem examination.


Retrospective study.


26 psittacine birds with gross and histologic evidence of cardiac disease.


Records of postmortem examinations of psittacine birds necropsied during a 4-year period were reviewed. Data on gross and histologic evidence of cardiac disease were analyzed. Birds identified included those in which congestive heart failure (CHF) was considered the primary cause of death and those in which substantial cardiac disease was evident, despite a lack of postmortem findings supportive of CHF.


Of 269 psittacine birds necropsied, 26 (9.7%) had evidence of cardiac disease. In 15 (58%) birds with cardiac disease, changes consistent with CHF were evident and were sufficiently severe as to be considered the cause of death. The remaining 11 birds had cardiac lesions secondary to other systemic diseases; cardiac lesions were considered to be an incidental finding in these birds, and CHF was not evident. Of the 15 birds with CHF, 10 had evidence of right ventricular or biventricular failure, whereas only 5 had evidence of left ventricular failure.

Clinical Implications

Prevalence of cardiac disease in the psittacine birds reported here was similar to that seen clinically in other companion animals. The high incidence of right ventricular or biventricular heart failure in psittacine birds was similar to that for poultry in which lesions of right-sided heart failure predominate. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;212:1737–1742)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



To report clinical, surgical, and pathological findings in client-owned rabbits with histologically confirmed appendicitis.


19 rabbits.


Medical records for client-owned rabbits that had a histologic diagnosis of appendicitis were reviewed.


Median age of the rabbits at presentation was 24.0 months (range, 4 to 84 months). Seventeen cases occurred during the summer and fall seasons. Decreased appetite (17/19 rabbits), abnormal rectal temperature (hyperthermia, 9/16 rabbits; hypothermia, 4/16 rabbits), hypocalcemia (8/11 rabbits), and hypoglycemia (7/15 rabbits) were common signs. Abdominal ultrasonography and CT findings were suggestive of appendicitis in 6 of 8 rabbits and in 1 of 2 rabbits, respectively. Of the 6 rabbits that received medical treatment, 3 died at 48 hours, 1 died at 24 hours after hospitalization, and 1 died at 10 days after presentation; 1 rabbit was alive at 1,030 days after presentation. Of the 8 rabbits that underwent appendectomy, 3 died before discharge from the hospital and 1 died 113 days after surgery; 4 rabbits were alive at 315, 334, 1,433, and 1,473 days after presentation. The remaining 5 rabbits either died or were euthanized before treatment could be instituted. In each of the 19 rabbits, the appendix had evidence of severe inflammation with mucosal ulceration, heterophilic inflammation, and necrotic debris.


For rabbits with decreased appetite and an apparently painful abdomen, hyperthermia, hypocalcemia, or hypoglycemia, appendicitis should be considered as a differential diagnosis. Further comparisons of medical and surgical treatments are required to establish treatment recommendations for rabbits with appendicitis.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association