Diagnosis and Treatment of Sialectasis in a Domestic Rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus)

Sara Gardhouse, David Guzman, Olivia A. Petritz, Mai Yee Mok, Frederick C Mohr, Nathan Tong, Miranda Sadar, Elaine D. Salinger, Michele A Steffey

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


An approximately 10-year-old female spayed rabbit (Oryctolagus cuniculus) was presented with a subcutaneous mass of the ventral submandibular and cervical region. Initial culture results from fine-needle aspirates revealed Gram-positive cocci; cultures following antibiotic therapy identified Cryptococcus spp. (not Cryptococcus neoformans), Actinomyces spp., unidentified yeast, and alpha-hemolytic Streptococcus spp. The mass did not resolve following antibiotic treatment and the rabbit was referred for further evaluation. A computed tomography scan revealed a large (× 5 × 5 cm3) fluid-filled rim-enhancing mass in the left submandibular and intermandibular region that extended caudally into the cervical region. The mass and attached skin were surgically excised, and the tissue was submitted for histopathology and culture. The histopathologic diagnosis of the mass was severe, cystic, heterophilic, lymphoplasmacytic dochitis, and cellulitis consistent with sialectasis. Enrichment broth culture grew Candida albicans. The rabbit made a rapid postoperative recovery. No signs of recurrence were noted at multiple examinations until 1 year following the surgical procedure, when a small (0.5 × 0.5 × 0.5 cm3) mass was identified at the previous location and contained fluid consistent with saliva. Culture of this fluid was negative. About 1 year following the initial surgery, computed tomography images were consistent with mild fluid dilation of the remaining tract of the salivary duct; surgical exploration and complete excision of the duct and salivary gland were recommended but declined by the owner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)72-79
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Exotic Pet Medicine
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • Dilated duct
  • Oryctolagus cuniculus
  • Rabbit
  • Sialectasis
  • Surgery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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