Small intestinal pseudodiverticulosis in a pony mare

Hannah R. Leventhal, Anna M. Hassebroek, Francisco Carvallo, Harold C. McKenzie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A 14-y-old pony mare was referred after 30-d duration of intermittent pyrexia, anorexia, weight loss, and change in manure consistency. Physical examination revealed a palpable but reducible ventral abdominal mass. Transabdominal ultrasonography revealed multiple distended, hypomotile, and thickened small intestinal loops in close approximation with numerous, well-defined, hyperechoic masses. There was a large amount of echogenic peritoneal fluid; abdominocentesis revealed a neutrophilic and macrophagic inflammatory exudate, and a mixed bacterial population was cultured. Given the poor prognosis, the mare was euthanized. The autopsy findings included a large abdominal abscess, serosanguineous peritoneal fluid with fibrin strands, and ~50 outpouches communicating with the lumen and extending from the anti-mesenteric aspect of the duodenum, jejunum, and ileum. These structures were classified as pseudodiverticula based on the histologic absence of the tunica muscularis layer of the intestinal wall. Pseudodiverticula should be included as a differential etiology in horses when clinical signs consistent with colic, diarrhea, or weight loss are recognized and, when on examination, one or more organized masses are palpated or visualized on transabdominal ultrasound, as well as visualization of small intestinal loops with thickened walls.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1123-1127
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Veterinary Diagnostic Investigation
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • abdomen
  • horses
  • pseudodiverticulosis
  • smooth muscle hypertrophy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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