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Cornell Vet. 1992 Apr;82(2):173-9.

Hypoglycemia and hepatic ischemic necrosis after small intestinal incarceration through the epiploic foramen in a horse.

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Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge 70803.


A 16-year-old stallion was presented to the Louisiana State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital for evaluation of acute abdominal pain. Physical examination and diagnostic procedures indicated a strangulating obstruction of the small intestine. At exploratory celiotomy, a strangulating incarceration of the jejunum through the epiploic foramen was found. The incarcerated small intestine was reduced, then resection of the nonviable bowel and anastomosis performed. After surgery, the horse exhibited clinical signs and laboratory findings associated with hypoglycemia and died in spite of emergency treatment. On post-mortem examination, a large thrombus was present in the portal vein at the level of the epiploic foramen and the liver had multiple large infarcted areas. The post-operative signs of hypoglycemia and necropsy findings of widespread hepatic ischemic necrosis are complications of epiploic foramen incarceration of the small intestine not previously reported and may in part explain the high mortality rate described for this lesion.

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