Tumors of the reproductive tract of sheep and goats: A review of the current literature and a report of vaginal fibroma in an Awassi ewe

Vet World. 2019 Jun;12(6):778-782. doi: 10.14202/vetworld.2019.778-782. Epub 2019 Jun 11.


Aims: This study aimed to provide a summary of all online available literature of published clinical and histopathological data regarding tumors affecting the reproductive tract of female sheep and goats. In addition, a detailed description of the clinical history, clinical findings, and gross and histopathological findings of one case of vaginal fibroma in an adult Awassi sheep is provided for the first time.

Materials and methods: Internet search engines such as PubMed, ResearchGate, Scopus, ScienceDirect, and Google Scholar were used to collect all published articles in refereed journals from 2000 to 2018 regarding tumors and tumor-like lesions involving the reproductive tract of ewes and does.

Results: There are six published papers in sheep and nine in goats reporting various malignant and non-malignant tumors involving different parts of the reproductive tract. The most commonly diagnosed tumors of the reproductive tract were leiomyoma (six cases), adenocarcinoma (six cases), leiomyosarcoma (three cases), adenoma (one case), squamous cell carcinoma (one case), and metastatic signet ring cell carcinoma (one case). The most common sites of tumor formation were the uterus (10 cases), vulva/vagina (five cases), ovaries (four cases), cervix (four cases), and Bartholin's gland (one case). All affected animals were aged females (older than 3 years of age). In both ewes and does, the most frequently reported clinical symptoms were chronic weight loss, pyometra, hydrometra, vaginal bleeding, abnormal vaginal discharges, straining, pollakisurie, ascites, and abdominal distension.

Conclusions: Tumors of the reproductive organs in sheep and goats are not uncommon and should be considered in the differential diagnoses in cases with poor reproductive function.

Keywords: benign tumors; malignancy; reproductive tract; small ruminants.