Originally Posted by technodoll
First, let me say that my little silkie hen's impacted crop was so severe, she was going to die from it.
Not even liquid was passing through anymore, she kept vomiting clear goo the past two days.
Her crop was bigger than a baseball, filled with thousands of pebbles - it weighed a ton and was distended beyond belief - looking at photos, I can see this had been going on for months but I never imagined it was impacted crop... I feel like such a failure
I tried massaging for days, with injections of oil to loosen the mass. I tried flushing the crop with baking soda and warm water.
And she's gone broody, so not eating nor drinking.
Just skin and bones, my poor sweet Angel!
So I had no choice but to perform home surgery to empty out her crop, the very last resort - and after reading as much as I could on the subject. I'm not squeamish but the thought of cutting into one of my pets like that, without sedation or anaesthesia, well it just makes me super ill. Thank goodness DH was there to hold Angel, encouraging me along the way, steadying my nerves.
She was a SUPER patient. Hardly moved at all, did not cry or struggle, nothing!!
Her chest was quite bare so I didn't need to pluck any feathers. Used a new, sterile razor blade to make a 1" vertical incision through the skin, to reveal the distended crop - there was surprisingly very little blood, hardly any at all. We had plenty of sterile gauze pads on hand to wipe up messes. I then made a 1/2" horizontal cut through the crop and the junk just started to ooze out.... Oh, the stench... unbelievable.
I used a sterile, glass twizzle stick to gently reach into the crop and pull the rotten brown mess out, it was hard going and very, very messy - there was at least 1/2 cup of tiny rocks in there, mixed with brown liquid, undigested grains and grasses - I couldn't get everything out as I would have had to make the incision much larger, everything was a giant stinking soggy mess everywhere and the hole was hard to see after a while. But we got a good 2/3 to 3/4 of the gunk out. I had to keep flushing with warm water to see what I was doing.
When she started wiggling, I stopped. Had been scooping junk out for about 15 minutes at that point and was afraid she would go into shock or something (DH was monitoring her breathing, eyes, heart rate, etc). We had her wrapped in a towel, laying on her side on the table, on a towel. She was wonderful.
To end the surgery, I used a swab of alcohol and chlorhexidrine (hospital stuff) to disinfect the crop incision, sutured with a fine needle and cotton thread. Again swabbed, then sutured the outside skin as best I could, I could tell this part was hurting Angel a bit. Made sure the sutures were separate, and that the crop was not stuck to the skin. Disinfected one last time, flushed with warm water, and the little lady is back in her crate on newspaper with only fortified water for the next 24 hours.
So far she seems to be doing good, cooing and busily trying to clean the mess on her chest.
*big sigh of relief*
I checked on her again, and she is bright-eyed and looking a bit confused, not sure how much pain she's in or if she feels much better now that the giant ball of rocks is mostly gone from her crop??
Praying no infection sets in... praying, praying for a fast and easy recovery...
I love her more than anything and would be devastated if she didn't make it after going through all of this.
Hope you found this informative, and I will update tomorrow on how the little Angel patient is.
Please send good healing vibes!