Peritoneal fluid (PF) was evaluated in 40 cows with left displaced abomasum (LDA) and 15 cows with abomasal volvulus (AV). PF was obtained by abdominocentesis at the right ventral abdomen at admission. Simultaneously, a blood sample was taken from the jugular vein. Biochemical and cytological variables in blood and PF specific for ischaemia, inflammation and cell damage were compared. Total protein, albumin, glucose and cholesterol were normal in PF of cows with LDA and AV. Although L-lactate increased in both groups, cows with AV had significantly higher values (LDA: 1.47/0.69/2.68 mmol/l; AV: 6.45/4.55/12.89 mmol/l (median/1. quartile/3. quartile)). D-dimer (LDA: 0.50/0.22/0.88 mg/l; AV: 1.11/0.40/1.85 mg/l) and LDH (LDA: 663/437/943 U/l; AV: 1099/750/1439 U/l) were only increased in PF of cows with AV. The number of leucocytes was normal; however, significantly more peritoneal neutrophils appeared necrotic or apoptotic after AV.
PF of cows with abomasal displacement showed distinctive features of ischaemia and inflammation. Characteristics of haemostatic dysfunction and cell damage were mainly evident in PF of cows with AV. The results suggest that anti-inflammatory therapy is indicated in each cow with abomasal displacement. Additionally, medical treatment should be directed to prevent complications of ischaemia and reperfusion in cows with AV.
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