Anorectal Papilloma Removal in Rabbits (Disease Investigation & Management - Treatment and Care)

Summary Information
Type of technique Health & Management / Disease Investigation & Management / Techniques:
Synonyms and Keywords Rectal papilla removal in rabbits
Description This description is based on that given by Jenkins (2004) (B602.22.w22).
  • Anaesthetise the rabbit. See: Treatment and Care - Anaesthesia and Chemical Restraint - Lagomorph Anaesthesia
  • Place the rabbit in dorsal recumbency with the pelvis slightly elevated.
  • Dilate the anus to provide surgical access:
  • Either: Have an assistant insert a human nasal speculum or veterinary canine vaginal speculum into the anus and hold it there.
  • OR: place several stay sutures around the anus, and have an assistant keep gentle traction on these.
  • Use sharp dissection or radiosurgery to remove the papilloma.
    • Make sure the whole of the papilloma is removed. (B600.9.w9, B602.22.w22, J213.8.w2)
    • If the papilloma is large, removing it in sections may make closure easier. (B602.22.w22)
  • Suture the mucosa.
    • Suture in a simple continuous pattern.
    • Use 5-0 or 6-0 absorbable suture material.
Appropriate Use (?)
  • For the removal of anorectal papillomas, if these do not spontaneously regress. (B600.9.w9, B602.16.w16, J213.8.w2)
Notes --
Complications/ Limitations / Risk
  • The tissue of the papilloma is friable and bleeds easily. (B602.22.w22)
  • If some of the papilloma is left behind at surgery, it may recur. (B600.9.w9, B602.22.w22, J213.8.w2)
    • Recurrence may occur even following complete removal. (V.w125)
Equipment / Chemicals required and Suppliers
  • 5-0 or 6-0 absorbable suture material. (B602.22.w22)

  • Generally, use polydioxanone (PDS II) or poliglecaprone (Monocryl, Ethicon) for surgery in rabbits. (B600.15.w15)
  • Human nasal speculum or veterinary canine vaginal speculum for keeping the anus dilated during surgery. (B602.22.w22)
    • Stay sutures can be used as an alternative. (B602.22.w22)
Expertise level / Ease of Use
  • This procedure should only be carried out by an individual with appropriate clinical training and practical experience. This would usually be a veterinarian.
Cost/ Availability

The costs of a surgical operation include those associated with: (J15.30.w1)

  • Pre-operative diagnostics (e.g. radiography, ultrasonography, blood tests)
  • Anaesthesia.
  • Perioperative medication (e.g. analgesics, antibiotics, fluids).
  • Surgical preparation (of the operating theatre and the patient, including staff time).
  • Consumables and equipment.
  • Time of the surgeon and assistant(s).
  • Post-operative hospitalisation.
Legal and Ethical Considerations In some countries there may be legislation restricting the use of this type of technique to licensed veterinarians. For example in the UK: "The Veterinary Surgeons Act 1966 (Section 19) provides, subject to a number of exceptions, that only registered members of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons may practice veterinary surgery." (See: LCofC1 - RCVS Guide to Professional Conduct 2000 - Treatment of Animals by Non-Veterinary Surgeons).
Author Debra Bourne MA VetMB PhD MRCVS (V.w5)
Referee Molly Varga BVetMed DZooMed MRCVS (V.w125)
References B600.9.w9, B602.22.w22, J15.30.w1, J213.8.w2

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