ShapeShapeauthorShapechevroncrossShapeShapeShapeGrouphamburgerhomeGroupmagnifyShapeShapeShaperssShape

Haematoma

Background and history

A haematoma is a pocket of blood that forms beneath the skin or in muscle tissue and is associated with a ruptured blood vessel. It usually arises from trauma particularly over the shoulders, flanks or the hind quarters. Not uncommonly the ear of the sow may be damaged following fighting or head shaking and rubbing associated with mange. Once sufficient pressure has built up in the tissues the haemorrhage stops and a clot is formed which is gradually removed by the normal body repair mechanisms and the swelling disappears.

In some cases the haematoma may be infected and an abscess will develop. This should be dealt with has described under abscess. It is inadvisable in the sow to lance a haematoma if it has not developed into an abscess. Always sample the fluid first by syringe and needle. If blood is withdrawn the haematoma is of recent origin and if serum is present it is long standing. Leave both alone. Animals with large haematoma of the ear are best culled.

A haematoma is a pocket of blood that forms beneath the skin or in muscle tissue and usually results from ruptured blood vessels following trauma particularly over the shoulders, flanks or the hind quarters. The most common site is the ear.

Clinical signs

This is a large swelling caused by haemorrhage beneath the skin into the subcutaneous tissue or muscles.

Sows

  • Blood from the vulva.
  • Head on one side.
  • Large swellings which develop suddenly.
  • The swellings contain blood or serum due to haemorrhage.

Piglets

  • Uncommon but as for sow.

Weaners and growers

  • Large swellings which develop suddenly.
  • The swellings contain blood or serum.

Diagnosis

This is based on the clinical signs. Differentiate from an abscess, test with a needle and syringe.

Causes

  • Fighting.
  • Mange.
  • Trauma.

Treatment

Studies have compared the options for treatment of haematomas and how these treatments affect health and productivity of the affected animals. Such studies have shown that incision of the haematoma significantly increases the risk of infection rather than leaving the haematoma to resolve itself. This said, the same studies have shown that the time taken for the resolution of a haematoma does not differ whether it is treated or left untreated. Pigs with haematomas have been proven to grow at slower rates than those without haematomas.