Abomasal displacement and volvulus in beef cattle: 19 cases (1988-1998).
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OBJECTIVE: To assess signalment, history, results of clinical and laboratory testing, and outcome for beef cattle with a left displaced abomasum (LDA), right displaced abomasum (RDA), or abomasal volvulus (AV). DESIGN: Retrospective study. ANIMALS: 19 beef cattle with an AV, LDA, or RDA. PROCEDURE: Signalment; history; results of physical examination, diagnostic testing, and surgical exploration; and condition of the animal at discharge were obtained from medical records. RESULTS: Fourteen cattle had an AV, 4 had an RDA, and 1 had an LDA. Duration of clinical signs ranged from 1 to 21 days. Eighteen cattle had an AV or RDA; 7 were Brahmans, 12 were males, and median age was 10 months. Abdominal distention was observed in 11 cattle, heart rate of > or = 100 beats/minute was detected in 14, and the abomasum was palpable per rectum in all cattle in which per rectal examination was performed. Leukocytosis, neutrophilia, hyperglycemia, azotemia, hypochloremia, and hypokalemia were common laboratory findings. At surgery, 3 cattle with an AV or RDA had a ruptured abomasum. Of the remaining 15 cattle, 12 survived. CONCLUSIONS: Clinical course in beef cattle with an AV or RDA was more protracted than that typically associated with these conditions in dairy cattle, but survival rate in beef cattle that did not have rupture of the abomasum was similar to that of dairy cattle. CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Abomasal displacement should be considered for beef cattle with abdominal distention. Prognostic indicators recommended for use in dairy cattle may not be useful for beef cattle.