Rumen Health Technical Guide

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Liver Abscess


Liver abscesses are formed by pathogenic toxins that have escaped the rumen.

When the rumen wall is damaged by the effects of acidosis, bacteria can enter the bloodstream and proliferate throughout the liver.38ReferenceView allGalyean M. L. and Rivera J. D. 2003.
Nutritionally related disorders affecting feedlot cattle. Can J. Anim. Sci. 83: 13–20.

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Abscessed liver
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Damage to the rumen wall allows pathogens into portal bloodstream
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Healthy liver
  • The most common causative agents are: Fusobacterium necrophorum (100% of cases) and Arcanobacter pyogenes (35% of cases).
  • Both are part of the normal microflora found in the rumen.
  • Toxins produced by these bacteria lead to a coagulative necrosis that develop into encapsulated abscesses over time and the form of a fibrous scar (up to 15cm in size).