Objective: Presentation of three cats with chronic, idiopathic chylothorax treated with ablation of the cisterna chyli as an additional or a sole surgical treatment.
Material and methods: Results of clinical and diagnostic examination, therapy and course of disease in three cats as well as the surgical technique of ablation of the cisterna chyli in cats are described.
Results: There were no intraoperative or postoperative complications regarding cisterna chyli ablation. Intraoperative visualization of the cisterna chyli is easily achieved by administering a small portion of a fatty aliment preoperatively or by injection of diluted methylene blue into the lymphatic system intraoperatively. Ablation of the cisterna chyli was performed following an unsuccessful ligation of the thoracic duct, in combination with the ligation of the thoracic duct and subtotal pericardectomy or as a single surgical treatment.
Clinical relevance: Cisterna chyli ablation can be performed without complications in cats. This technique should be considered in cases of previously failed surgical therapy or as an adjunct therapy used with other surgical options to decrease the risk of recurrence.