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PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2009 3:10 pm 
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Today I have found one of my wyandottes cockerals to have a sinus infection, so I thought I'd take some shots to demonstrate what it can look like. This boy is about 5 months old and hasn't been sick. In a mixed flock the cockerals of this age seem to be far more prone to any health issue. He's in that growing phase where his nutrtional needs are high, and he was the only bird to show vulnerability to disease. He was moving around completely normally, free ranging, roosting, no leg issues, no coughing, no sneezing. I didn't realise anything was wrong with him until I saw the swelling in the sinus - not the eye.
Here he is:
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He's got good colour in his wattles and comb, and I don't believe he has any nutritional deficiencies. There's no other sick birds. He's just got a cold. I wasn't sure until I opened his mouth and saw some mucous.
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The swelling itself feels hard to touch. I can move it around and feel that it's free from the underlying bone etc. There is no way this can be squeezed out anywhere. I would think that in an ideal world of limitless resources, a surgery might be done to remove it. I have heard of these swellings going down themselves after many weeks, or even months, so maybe he'll get lucky. So far I've never had one this bad pull through.
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I had a good look in the eye to see if that was involved at all. It looks clear to me. So this particular infection seems to be only in the sinus at the moment. I wonder if it will move into the eye. Time will tell.
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The other side of the face looks completely normal.
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I give him a 50/50 chance because he's in great shape and eating well. It now depends where we go from here. I'm not going to the vet with this one, because the thing that is the most helpful - sinus flushing - is enormously expensive. I'm not going to give him oral antibiotics either, because I want him to have tip top digestion. I'm going to put him on the rickett's diet and see what happens.

I've seen a few eye and sinus threads recently so thought others might be interested. I have now isolated this bird from the flock. Some breeders might cull him at this point, but I'm still curious about the disease process here, and he doesn't seem distressed at all. I took the last one to the vet to satisfy myself about whether the injectable antibiotics were worthwhile. This time I'm going with the 'feed well and wait and see' approach. I'll keep you posted.

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PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2009 5:50 pm 
Those are amazing photos, great detail — thanks for the information.
I hope he recovers.
Jennie


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2009 11:54 pm 
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Thanks Jennie,
I should probably have added that he came down with this at the same time as a dramatic weather change. It was really hot and humid, and then we got the tail end of the rain from up north Qld. It rained buckets and suddenly got very cool, and then he was struck with this. No other birds came into the property, so perhaps he was made vulnerable by shock of the weather change and the wet - not sure.

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 9:09 am 
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Fantastic photo and detail Chicken07. Thanks for sharing. Hope he recovers OK. Will you keep us informed please....

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 9:18 am 
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Yep - that's the idea. I'm trying to work out the best method of maximising the chance of survival for those of us who can't spend $350 on a sick chook. It could be a long process, but I'll keep you updated.

Cheers,

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 14, 2009 10:46 am 
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Excellent photos Cathy... I'm sure with your help he will make it ... looks a strong bird.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 9:36 am 
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Ok, so here's an update. It's now ten days since the last post, and 11 days since the first sign of infection.

He's lost quite a lot of weight. Unfortunately, I haven't been able to crop feed him as I've been away, so now he needs to come into the house and get crop fed to get more weight on him. I'm not sure how much he's lost but his breast bone is fairly sharp and boney. I've felt worse, but it needs to turn around pretty quickly. His comb and wattles are a bit less red and slightly shrivelled. He seems to be moving around fine, and so far I see no sign of rickets. This morning he was crawling with lice, so he probably has a high worm load as well. I've dusted him and treated him with moxidectin. It doesn't take long for the parasites to crowd in when a bird is off colour.

I don't like the sinus either. It seems to me that it's a bit bigger. He's using a foot to try and scratch it so it must be bothering him. I'm seriously considering opening it with a sterile blade and removing the plug. I don't really like the idea. I'm concerned about causing him pain, and I'm also concerned about my ability to clean it, and the possibility of further infection. I think I would need an opening about a third to half the length of it in order to get the waxy plug out. I'm not squeemish and would be fine to do it, I'm just not sure it's the best course of action. Any comments?
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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:28 am 
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I don't think you have much choice, Cathy. I don't like the look of it. It seems to be a bit more yellowish in colour - although that may be the light... :?

I wouldn't like to try it single-handedly though. Do you have someone to help you? A sharp scalpel ( my Rural Science bioligy dissection kit is handy!), short of something like that metal manicure tools to "spoon" it - (like they do with my skin cancers :P ) - all sterile of course.

Very good light and preferably a magnifying glass. I'd help if I lived a bit closer.

No chance of seeing an avian vet?

Chook pus will not drain by itself and really has to be scraped out. I had a little hen that was misdiagnosed with a face abscess (Lucy's lump thread) and in the end when the avian vet opened it (after 2 treatments from an "ordinary" vet) - we could see it was cancerous-looking and a biopsy confirmed that.

The vet had several avian patients in the clinic at various stages of the long sinus draining treatment and I got to learn a bit about sinus-draining in my several visits (with a sick duck shortly after the hen).

The vet used peroxide on my chook's incision to help clean it as he went. Betadine around - but that can actually slow down healing, in an open wound I believe.

Best wishes - your bird will go downhill without intervention is the feeling that I have - sorry :(

Meanwhile try to stop him scratching and aggravating (and possibly infecting) the lump - see my duckling cape as an option..


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:35 am 
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Chicken07,

Have you checked up in the roof of the mouth. I have seen similar type lumps due to something like an oat grain becoming lodged and not a sinus infection.

J

PS: Sorry if you have already been down that path.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 10:37 am 
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While I don't mind taking him to a vet, I've tried three around here and they are really not into birds. I could possibly try the Brisbane Bird Vet (Chermside). The problem is that while I don't mind paying for a consult and a procedure, as soon as they want to do a general and put the bird in overnight for observation and fluids the $$$$ just start piling up.

I think I'm going to have to give it a go. I'll go and buy what I need today and get the OH to hold the bird for me tonight.

Do you have a link for your duckling cape?

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Betadine around - but that can actually slow down healing, in an open wound I believe.
Thanks for that tips. Looks like I'll need hydrogen peroxide. Do you know why Betadine slows down healing?

When you watched your bird's operation, how did the vet 'flush' it out. It's highly likely that there is more material in the unswollen parts of the sinus and I'm wondering if there is a way to clear them. I'm probably reaching above my ability here, but I'm just trying to understand the anatomy of the bird. Did you see the vet doing it? Did the vet open your bird up, or just flush it? Also, I need to know more about the anatomy to decide where on that lump would be the best place for an incision. I've been looking through books, but most only give general details. I need to know exactly how those passages drain etc. (One book said that you hold a bird upside down to flush sinuses.)

Jocler - thanks for that tip. No I haven't looked. I'll do that today.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 11:31 am 
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http://www.seqwa.net/favouritelinks.htm - Cathy how far are you away from the vet in this link? I have heard some good reports. She may not be a specialist avian vet but has been helpful with waterfowl.

Glennie would be able to fill you in more. ( I believe this is the "local vet" that was helpful viewtopic.php?f=5&t=9495&p=68038#p68038 )
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viewtopic.php?p=173497#173497http://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/456300_3

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viewtopic.php?f=5&t=5135&hilit=Lump+on+hen%27s+face Not sure if all this thread was re-constructed after server crash...

Outcome - could be merged to other thread. .viewtopic.php?f=5&t=6326&p=41872&hilit=Lucy%27s+lump#p41872

Will look up Betadine and peroxide and see if I have more notes from vet...

Oh - Peroxide was used as a debriding agent mainly - bubbling out dead tissue - there are gentler ones available I think - - a quick Google of "peroxide+wounds" - can read article but posting link not working..

General wound care http://www.jbpub.com/samples/0763742090 ... 97_113.pdf

( Edit -Photo was removed for aesthetic reasons :wink: )


Last edited by Cackles on Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 1:06 pm 
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Cathy this link may be helpful with photos

http://images.google.com.au/imgres?imgu ... a%26sa%3DG

Warning.... do not click on the link if you are not prepared to see graphic photos

copy and paste the entire link Cathy... it give graphic photos of pm'd birds sinus area's might help you with your task

Click on ... New task
Then click on .. Lesion Location and type in sinus.... it should come up with
infraorbital sinus

Hope it helps you

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:33 pm 
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Thanks everyone for the information.

Well Cackles, that picture makes my bird look positively healthy. The poor creature. I also had a look at your ducky raincoat - very cute. I think in this case perhaps filing his nails down, or putting some elastoplast on them might stop him damaging the skin. I will give it some thought. I'm not sure how a jacket will stop his leg getting to his eye. I do have some old little poodle jackets from when we used to live in a cold climate. I have a raincoat type that's not too hot. The Springfield vet looks good. It's about 100km south of here. I've put it in my favourites as a backup plan.

Sandy, there was a few good pictures, so thanks for that link. I really hope that he doesn't have cancer or another hidden disease, but all I can do is give him a chance.

I went to the pharmacy. They had 3% or 6% hydrogen pyroxide - I got 3%, I hope that's suitable. I think that being near the eye, the gentler the better. Should I tape his eye shut when I do it? Anyone tried that with a chicken eye?

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 8:07 pm 
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The reason I posted the site was so you can see the layout of the sinus area your going to be working in.. not the diseases they showed on the site..

Lance below the lump so when it drains it drains everything from the bottom of the cut ... saw Dr Harry do this to a chicken once... he put a piece of cloth between the two sinus cavities to allow for drainage... but without being in a sterile area I personally wouldn't do that.. but the idea of allowing draining to take place is a good idea... not sure what you would put in the wound to allow this to happen... in the hospitals they have these small tubes that sit in the wounds and tape them to some gauze or something to soak up the ooze.

Might be a good idea to tape both eyes shut... it will make the bird less likely to be flighty if he can't see and easier to work with..hopefully

You may find nothing comes out... as it may just be swelling ..

Hope you have antibiotics to give him once you've opened up this area... it will infect easily

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PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 8:51 pm 
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Too late Sandy, I'd already done it.
Quote:
The reason I posted the site was so you can see the layout of the sinus area your going to be working in.. not the diseases they showed on the site..
Yes I did realise this, and did look at those also, particularly the one that had been skinned so the underneath could be seen.

There was no pus in it at all. It was like cutting through something the texture of orange skin - quite tough, with layers going in. Drainage wasn't going to be a problem because there was no liquid in it (apart from a little blood at the cut). I was sorry I had done it because I clearly wasn't going to improve the situation for him. It was either very swollen tough tissue, or else a tumour. I checked inside the roof of his mouth, there was no seed or any foreign material. His mouth looked quite healthy and normal. I did have antibiotics here for him, but I decided he'd been through enough. He's been sick for almost two weeks and now I've cut open his face for nothing. I decided to send him on to chookie heaven because he'd had enough.
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Thanks for your efforts everyone.

edit: umm ... my OH who is part mad scientist has brought the head of this cockerel back to the house in a paper towel and placed it on the kitchen bench for dissection. The two teens doing the dishes nearly brought the house down, so he covered it over so they can't see it and he's coming back to it once they've finished and left the room. He's trying to get me to do it, but I kinda feel sad about this boy. I said if he does it, I'll come and take some pics. They will probably be too nasty for this site.


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