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To provide veterinarians with updated radiographic descriptions of select radiolucent foreign material in a simulated gastrointestinal environment.


368 veterinarian respondents from the US.


An online survey was administered between June 18, 2023, and July 2, 2023, through a private veterinarian-based social media group. Representative commonly ingested foreign bodies were radiographed surrounded by air and water to simulate being within the gastrointestinal tract. Two examiners evaluated and qualified the opacity of the objects for each environment.


The private social media group had a total of 3,900 members including veterinarians from all disciplines. A total of 362 small animal veterinarians (9.3% of the group) responded to the study reporting a total of 123 foreign objects that were not causing mechanical obstruction at the time of initial presentation. Sixty-eight foreign bodies were reported greater than or equal to 5 times and grouped as balls (n = 4), food (9), fabric (14), wood (3), soft plastic (14), hard plastic (18), or other (6). Most (98.5% [67/68]) objects were easily identifiable in air. In water, 23.5% (16/68) of the objects were obscured, and 39.7% (27/68) had inversion of the major opacity when compared to the opacity in air.


The opacity of some ingested radiolucent material can invert relative to air or fluid, which may reflect substantial differences in detection following repositioning. When known dietary indiscretion occurs, radiographing a sample of the material in air and water will improve the accuracy of assessment.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To establish an objective method of determining proventricular diameter in psittacine birds by assessment of lateral whole-body radiographic views.

Design—Retrospective case-control study.

Animals—100 parrots with no signs of gastric disease and 19 parrots with signs of gastric disease.

Procedures—Measurements were obtained for the following variables: proventricular diameter at the level of the junction between the last thoracic vertebra and synsacrum, maximum distance between the dorsal serosa of the proximal aspect of the proventriculus and dorsal border of the sternum, maximum coelomic cavity height at the level of the proximal aspect of the proventriculus, and maximum dorsoventral height of the keel of the sternum. The ratio of proventricular diameter to each of those measurements was calculated and compared among species within the group without signs of gastric disease and between the gastric and nongastric disease groups.

Results—No significant differences were seen among species of parrots without signs of gastric disease for any ratio, but there were significant differences between parrots with gastric signs and those without gastric signs for all ratios. Only the proventricular diameterto-maximum dorsoventral height of the keel of the sternum ratio had no numeric overlap between groups. Sensitivity and specificity of the ratio for detection of proventricular enlargement were both 100%. Six causes associated with proventricular enlargement were identified.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Evaluation of the proventricular diameter-to-keel height ratio is a new method for evaluating proventricular size in psittacines. Ratio values < 0.48 indicate normal proventricular diameter and the absence of proventricular disease.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association