Help!! Unsuccessful bumblefoot surgery

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by austinhens, Oct 29, 2014.

  1. austinhens

    austinhens Hatching

    Oct 29, 2014
    Hi all,

    I'm sorry if this get's posted multiple times. I've tried a couple times already and gotten an error message saying the post had to be viewed by moderators because it had a link in it, but this is urgent so I'm trying again.

    My two year old Rhode Island Red hen has had a swollen foot for a few months, but I had been hesitant to operate on her because she was walking fine on it and the foot was got getting any bigger. I always suspected it was bumblefoot, but the bottom of her foot never had the tell-tale scab that you are supposed to see.

    In the past couple days the swelling rapidly got worse, and this morning I noticed she couldn't walk on the foot at all. She was standing on her one good foot, and hopping around to get anywhere. I figured I couldn't wait any longer, so I ran out to the store and got a scalpel, gauze, vet wrap, veterycin, and triple antibiotic gel. I was operating by myself and made two line incisions in different parts of the bottom of her foot (since there was no scab, I didn't have that to guide me). I probed deep, but couldn't find any infected tissue or evidence of the kernel that you are supposed to see in bumblefoot. I also tried massaging the foot to see if I could squeeze anything out or even feel any hard areas, but to no luck. The whole area was fleshy and relatively soft. I couldn't bring myself to go any deeper (she began twitching more and more the deeper I went), so I filled the incisions with as much triple antibiotic as I could, wrapped up the foot with some veterycin-soaked gauze beneath the pad, and put some antibiotics in her drinking water (I've tried powders in the drinking water a few times before as well). After the procedure she could stand on her good foot and hop around like before without putting the bad one on the ground.

    Is there any chance the foot swelling is not due to bumblefoot? Like I said, the whole area feels soft, unlike the hard, scaly stuff I've seen in pictures online. I'm starting to lose hope here, and I'm VERY hesitant to put my hen through what I did this morning again without being able to get anything out of the foot. Right now I'm just waiting out the next few days to see what happens. She is otherwise healthy, but if her one foot is permanently non-usable, I'm worried the responsible thing to do may be just to cull her.

    Unfortunately I don't have any pictures, but if either of my other attempts to post are put up, they have a link to a picture of a chicken foot that looks just like hers.

    Thank you for any advice!!!

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