Monday, November 10, 2008

Public Service Announcement

This is the uterus of a 3 year old 43# pitbull. She presented for vaccinations, but on exam, had an enlarged abdomen and poor body condition. Heartworm test was negative. No fever. And then she produced some foul smelling yellow-brown vulvar discharge. Diagnosis of a pyometra was presumed. Emergency surgery revealed a grossly distended but intact uterus that was removed en bloc. It weighed 7.9 lbs. That would be 18% of her body weight was pus filled uterus! Her history showed that she had one normal litter of puppies previously. Most likely her following heat cycle allowed bacteria into the uterus that the body was unable to clear and that the pus had been building up for weeks to months. The reason she was still alive was that the cervix was open just a little to allow a small amount of drainage. Otherwise it would have continued to accumulate pus until it ruptured and she would have had a fatal peritonitis.

Moral of the story: get your dog spayed!

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