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Comparison between generalised peritonitis and parietal fibrinous peritonitis in cows after caesarean section
  1. Salem Djebala1,
  2. Julien Evrard2,
  3. Nassim Moula3,
  4. Linde Gille1,
  5. Calixte Bayrou1,
  6. Justine Eppe1,
  7. Hélène Casalta1,
  8. Arnaud Sartelet1 and
  9. Philippe Bossaert1
  1. 1Clinical Department of Ruminant, University of Liege, Liege, Belgium
  2. 2Gestion et Prévention de Santé, Regional Association of Health and Animal Identification, Ciney, Belgium
  3. 3Department of Animal Production, University of Liege, Liege, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to Dr Salem Djebala; sdjebala{at}


Background Parietal fibrinous peritonitis (PFP) and generalised peritonitis (GP) are two postoperative complications in cows, characterised by fluid and fibrin accumulation throughout the peritoneum (GP) or in an encapsulated cavity (PFP). Unlike GP, PFP is scarcely documented.

Methods Twenty-one GP cases and 12 PFP cases were confirmed by ultrasound in cows referred to the Veterinary Clinic (Liège University) for complications after caesarean section. All cows underwent a standardised examination protocol. Blood samples were analysed for metabolic and inflammatory markers. Bacteriology was performed on peritoneal fluid samples. Treatment consisted of surgical drainage of the abdominal cavity (GP) or the encapsulated cavity (PFP). Variables concerning anamnesis, clinical findings and treatment outcomes were compared.

Results Perioperative complications had occurred in 9/21 GP cows but 0/12 PFP cows (P<0.05). Biochemical analysis indicated pronounced inflammation and did not differ between groups. Peritoneal fluid samples of both groups were contaminated and contained similar bacteria (Trueperella pyogenes and Escherichia coli). While 11/12 PFP cows were discharged, all patients with GP died or were euthanased (P<0.05).

Conclusions We hypothesise that PFP and GP are two different manifestations of perioperative peritoneal contamination. The severity and spread of the contamination determine the clinical presentation and the prognosis.

  • parietal fibrinous peritonitis
  • generalized peritonitis
  • laparotomy
  • inflammation
  • cattle
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  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement Data are available on reasonable request.

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