Hernia and free gas bloat in a 3 month Holstein heifer
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A 3 month old Holstein heifer housed on a large dairy in Northeast China was examined on October 17th, 2011 for reported intermittent bloat, hernia, and failure to thrive. At approximately 10 days of age the heifer was operated on by farm veterinarians for correction of an umbilical hernia, however the procedure was apparently ineffective and a larger hernia developed subsequently. At 3 months of age the heifer was examined and was found to be moderately bloated with a large ventral hernia. Different options for management and potential interventions for umbilical hernias and free gas bloat were discussed. A brief economic analysis was conducted, and it was decided that the heifer would undergo an open herniorrhaphy to correct the hernia the following day. During surgery, multiple body wall defects were identified and encompassed into one new elliptical incision, and this large defect was closed. The heifer recovered uneventfully from surgery and was found the next day with a moderately distended rumen extending into the left paralumbar fossa. A plastic bloat whistle was placed through the skin, body wall and into the rumen. One month later, the heifer was thriving in an outdoor pen with other weaned heifers. This case is an example of cost effective surgical correction of an umbilical hernia in which prior treatment was not successful.
Journal / Series
Seminar SF610.1 2012