Fatal Uterine/Ovarian Infection in Gecko Female (Graphic Photo Warning)

Olympus

Biologist & Ecologist
Messages
298
Location
Miami, Fl.
GRAPHIC PHOTO WARNING

I observed one of my fat tailed females acting unusually this morning so I went to pick her up and found her to be incredibly limp, uncoordinated, and with a massive bruise on her abdomen, so I knew she was in her final moments. About 30 minutes later she was gone, so I tried to take a few minutes between work to open her up, to see what had happened.

What I observed was a MASSIVE infection of the uterus and ovaries. The closest analogy would be pyometra in cats and dogs. From the photos it's clear that there is nothing we could have done, this is really severe. It is rare but it happens.

Here you can see the dark spot on her abdomen. I fully expected to find a belly full of blood, honestly, from some sort of trauma.



As soon as I cut into the abdomen out poured a lot of green watery fluid, probably bile from a ruptured gall bladder (damage from the infection.)



Those "bubbles" are follicles going wrong, but more on that later.



Here are her two fat pads towards the bottom, that's what the two white flaps are. The one on the right is empty but the one on the left was inflamed and full of nothing but thick, white pus. That large brownish grape-looking thing above is a severely infected ovary/follicle.



These three swollen things are all part of the same ovary, severely infected an inflamed. When I cut into each grape-sized bubble I got more solid, thick pus and some blood.









What you see at the top of the incision, that pale tan thing, is her liver. It is not suppose to be that color. Her intestines, buried deep in the pus, were pure white as well, there was no color in them either. She probably bled significantly into that infected follicle, as well as had terrible anemia.



There is not much I could have done, I weighed everyone last week and she was fine. No bruising and alert. Nothing caught my attention in the last few days and only today did she act in a way that got my attention, otherwise I would not have known until after she died. The infection was so severe and so systemic that I'm not sure that even aggressive antibiotics and a hysterectomy would have done much had we spotted this a few days ago.

It's just something that happens. Like my vet friend who looked at the photos as a second opinion said, "her ovaries and developing eggs are toast."
 
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DrCarrotTail

Moderator
Messages
3,590
Location
Ridgewood, NJ
So sorry for your loss. Glad you learned what was wrong and could share. Shows others how risky breeding these little guys can be and how breeding "just because" may not be the best choice. Best of luck with the rest of your season!
 

Olympus

Biologist & Ecologist
Messages
298
Location
Miami, Fl.
Thanks Lisa. Definitely. Although something like this can happen to virgin females as well, especially since a lot of these species make infertile eggs every so often anyway, anything can go awry at any time. Thankfully this kind of thing is uncommon, but reproductive issues can definitely happen. This was a female in perfect health and good weight otherwise.
 

GazzaB85

New Member
Messages
22
Location
England, uk
Aww no so sorry for your loss. I would be devestated if it happened to any off mine. Thanks for sharing and making us more aware. R.i.p
 
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