The left wing of a whooping crane (Grus americana) was amputated for treatment of severe nonunion and malunion fractures of the radius and ulna. During the postoperative convalescent period, the bird aspirated a corn kernel and subsequently suffered episodic bouts of dyspnea. The bird was anesthetized with tiletamine-zolazepam. Attempts to deliver the kernel through the glottis with endoscopic instruments were unsuccessful. The corn kernel was retrieved via a tracheotomy incision. Endoscopy of the trachea 2 mo postoperatively showed complete healing of the tracheal incision. Mucosal integrity had been reestablished, and tracheal lumen diameter was not compromised. The bird continues in good health 2.5 yr after surgery, shows no sign of respiratory disease, and currently is in a captive breeding program.
Additional Publication Details
Surgical removal of a tracheal foreign body from a whooping crane (Grus americana)