Ultrasonographic characterization of feline ileocecocolic abnormalities

Vet Radiol Ultrasound. 2011 May-Jun;52(3):335-9. doi: 10.1111/j.1740-8261.2010.01777.x. Epub 2011 Jan 4.


The clinical signs of 29 cats with ultrasonographic abnormalities at the ileocecocolic junction were reviewed. Twenty-eight cats had gastrointestinal signs, with acute vomiting and diarrhea being most prevalent. Eighteen of 29 cats had enlarged cecal lymph nodes. Focal hyperechoic mesenteric fat was noted in 18 of 29 cats, and mild focal fluid accumulation was seen in seven of 29 cats. Six cats had a round cecum, and eight cats had cecal content. The cecal wall was thickened in 19 cats, and the ileal wall was mildly thickened in six cats. Three cats had changes involving the ascending colon adjacent to the ileocecocolic junction. Fourteen cats had no ultrasonographic evidence of changes in the remainder of the gastrointestinal tract, and 13 of these 14 cats were symptomatic for gastrointestinal disease. Four cats with resolution of the ultrasonographic changes also had resolution of clinical signs. These results suggest that ultrasonographic abnormalities at the level of the ileocecocolic junction in cats are clinically significant and are seen in cats with acute vomiting or diarrhea. Fine-needle aspirates and biopsies of the ileocecocolic area had a low diagnostic yield. When no other gastrointestinal abnormalities are detected, we therefore recommend follow-up ultrasound examinations of these patients.

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Cat Diseases / diagnostic imaging*
  • Cats
  • Cecum / diagnostic imaging*
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / diagnostic imaging
  • Gastrointestinal Diseases / veterinary*
  • Ileum / diagnostic imaging*
  • Lymph Nodes / diagnostic imaging
  • Ultrasonography