Management of an ingested lead foreign body in an Amazon parrot

Shannon M. Riggs, Birgit Puschner, Lisa A. Tell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


An adult male, double-yellow-head Amazon parrot (Amazona ochrocephala oratrix) was presented with a 36-h history of seizure episodes. On presentation, the bird was slightly obtunded, seizured once for approximately 20 sec and the seizure was controlled with midazolam. Whole body radiographs revealed a 2-mm diameter, circular, dense object in the ventriculus. A presumptive diagnosis was made of lead toxicosis, and supportive care of sc fluids and gavage feedings. Calcium disodium EDTA and chelation therapy was initiated immediately. Blood analysis revealed 1.2 ppm lead wet weight. Bulk diet therapy with frequent high fiber gavage feedings was unsuccessful at removing the foreign body and the lead object was ultimately retrieved from the ventriculus using endoscopy. Sources of lead available to the pet birds include lead weights, solder, stained glass molding, jewelry and bird toys. However, this Amazon parrot was fed portions of game birds that contained lead shots within their muscles, which is a common source of secondary lead poisoning in raptors.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)345-348
Number of pages4
JournalVeterinary and Human Toxicology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)
  • Toxicology
  • Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis


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