Use of a chain écraseur for excision of a pharyngeal granuloma in a cow

Mélanie J. Boileau, DVM, MS, DACVIM; Henry W. Jann, DVM, MS, DACVS; Anthony W. Confer, DVM, PhD, DACVP
April 1, 2009
Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Case Description—A 10-year-old Longhorn cow pregnant with a valuable fetus was evaluated because of progressive inspiratory dyspnea of 6 weeks' duration.

Clinical Findings—Physical examination findings were consistent with upper respiratory tract obstruction. A large pedunculated soft tissue mass was evident in the mid-dorsal aspect of the pharynx during palpation and endoscopic examination. Results of microscopic examination of transendoscopic fine-needle aspirates and a biopsy specimen were suggestive of a bacterial granuloma.

Treatment and Outcome—Transtracheal intubation was performed, and the mass was excised with a chain écraseur. Results of histologic examination were consistent with a diagnosis of actinobacillosis. The owner reported that the cow was doing well without any recurrence of respiratory distress 8 months after surgery.

Clinical Relevance—Findings suggested that pharyngeal granuloma resulting from actinobacillosis should be included in the differential diagnoses when examining mature cattle with upper respiratory tract obstruction and that a chain écraseur may be useful for excising soft tissue pharyngeal masses in cattle.