Atresia coli in calves: 26 cases (1977-1987).

P. D. Constable, D. M. Rings, B. L. Hull, G. F. Hoffsis, J. T. Robertson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Atresia coli was identified in 26 calves. In calves with abdominal distension, progressive depression, and the absence of feces since birth, atresia coli should be suspected. Surgery was performed on 24 calves, involving decompression of the distended large intestine followed by colonic anastomosis. Nine calves were subsequently discharged; 3 of those calves reached breeding age. As an adult, 1 of the calves produced 5 offspring unaffected by atresia coli. Early postoperative mortality was associated with hypothermia, peritonitis, and ischemic necrosis of the large intestine. Calves with visible signs of peritonitis at surgery had a poor prognosis. Four calves had motility disturbances of the colon after surgery. These were characteristic of a functional obstruction and were unresponsive to treatment. Surgery was most successful in calves that were bright, alert, and ambulatory.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)118-123
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jul 1 1989
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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