A chance to cut is a chance to cure

Practical tips for performing a rumenostomy


  • Elizabeth R. Homerosky Veterinary Agri-Health Services Ltd., 201-151 East Lake Blvd. NE, Airdrie, Alberta, T4A 2G1




rumen fistula, bloat, vagal indigestion, feedlot cattle


A rumenostomy is a quick and easy surgery that can help remedy recurrent bloat refractory to medical therapy. This clean-contaminated surgery is particularly useful among cattle experiencing chronic vagal indigestion, and is a common surgery performed in feedlot cattle. Preoperative analgesia should be provided; however, choice of antibiotic therapy is generally left to the discretion of the surgeon. Following local anesthesia and surgical prep of the left paralumbar fossa, a circular incision is made through the skin. Muscle layers are removed or bluntly dissected and the peritoneum is incised to visualize the rumen. The rumen wall is exteriorized and stay sutures are applied to reduce the risk of rumen contents contaminating the abdomen. A stoma into the rumen is created and a tight seal between the rumen wall and skin is achieved via several different suture pattern options. Patient prognosis is generally good regardless of surgical technique,pending no severe underlying medical conditions are present.






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