To assess the feasibility of a novel technique involving a vessel and tissue–sealing device (VTSD) for ovariectomy in chickens to evaluate the potential application of the procedure to other avian species.
20 domestic laying hens (Gallus domesticus), of which 10 were immature (< 4 months old) and 10 were adults (> 18 months old).
Ovariectomy was performed with a VTSD through a left lateral celiotomy. Birds were allowed to recover for 14 days after the procedure and then were euthanized for necropsy. A board-certified veterinary pathologist performed complete necropsies, with particular attention to identifying any remaining ovarian tissue.
All birds survived the procedure. For the mature and juvenile birds, the mean ± SD durations of anesthesia (interval from intubation to extubation) were 67.2 ± 7.6 minutes and 50.5 ± 5.1 minutes, respectively, and mean durations of surgery were 45.3 ± 8.5 minutes and 31.6 ± 5.1 minutes, respectively. Three birds had severe hemorrhage during ovariectomy. At necropsy, ovarian tissue was present grossly in 2 mature birds and histologically in 6 additional birds (2 mature and 4 juvenile birds), indicating incomplete excision in 8 (40%) birds.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Results indicated that the evaluated VTSD can be used to successfully perform ovariectomies in both juvenile and mature chickens, although the procedure was associated with major hemorrhage and incomplete excision of ovarian tissue in some cases. Use of this VTSD for ovariectomy in birds of other species, particularly birds with reproductive tract disease, should be investigated.