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Sheep and goats
Diaphragmatic lesions and fatal haemorrhage in Texel sheep
  1. Katie Waine1,
  2. Benjamin William Strugnell2,
  3. Fiona Howie3,
  4. Vanessa Swinson4 and
  5. Mick Millar5
  1. 1Veterinary Pathology Service, University of Nottingham School of Veterinary Medicine and Science, Nottingham, UK
  2. 2Farm Post Mortems Ltd, Durham, UK
  3. 3SAC Consulting Veterinary Services (a division of SRUC), Penicuik, UK
  4. 4Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Veterinary Investigation Centre Thirsk, Thirsk, UK
  5. 5Farm Animal Pathology Service, University of Bristol, Bristol, UK
  1. Correspondence to Dr Benjamin William Strugnell; benstrugnell{at}


Twelve Texel sheep were found to have diaphragmatic lesions, with or without thoracic haemorrhage, at postmortem examination over a period of two-and-a-half years. Presenting clinical signs ranged from general malaise or mild respiratory stertor, to severe acute respiratory distress or sudden death. Gross postmortem findings included focal areas of diaphragmatic haemorrhage, diaphragmatic musculature necrosis or diaphragmatic rupture with herniation of abdominal viscera into the thoracic cavity. In some cases, acute severe fatal haemorrhage from either thoracic vessels or the diaphragmatic lesions was observed. Histopathology confirmed an acute event leading to the sudden death of affected animals, but also suggested a pre-existing chronic degenerative lesion of unknown aetiology affecting the diaphragmatic muscle. This case report suggests diaphragmatic lesions, with or without fatal thoracic haemorrhage, as a differential for respiratory distress or sudden death in young Texel sheep.

  • Texel
  • sheep
  • diaphragmatic hernia
  • major thoracic haemorrhage
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  • Contributors All authors have made a sufficient contribution to this paper to justify their inclusion as authors.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement No additional data are available.

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