Kenzo is a 9 month old cat who recently started vomiting. Vet Naz examined him and found he was dehydrated and had a hard mass in his abdomen. It can be difficult to tell whether a mass in the abdomen is a lump of faeces, which would be a normal finding, or an abnormality such as a foreign object. Naz admitted Kenzo for intravenous fluids to treat his dehydration, and for an x-ray to investigate his abdomen.
The x-ray showed an area of increased radio-opacity, or increased whiteness, in the ventral abdomen. Naz was suspicious that this could be an intussusception, so performed an ultrasound scan of Kenzo’s abdomen to confirm.
An intussusception is a telescoping of one area of the intestines into another, and causes a blockage. This can be caused by parasites, inflammation, or an intestinal mass (more likely in an older animal). The only treatment is surgery.
Kenzo was anaesthetised and Naz performed an exploratory laparotomy. This is an incision into the abdomen to allow the organs to be examined. He identified the intussusception and treated it with an enterectomy (removing the affected section of gut and suturing the two healthy ends back together).
Kenzo recovered well and was back at home the following day. As you can see from the photo, he is extremely handsome!