Surgical Removal of a Seminoma From a Black Sea Bass (Centropristis striata)
IAAAM Archive
Scott Weber1; Chick Weisse2; Zach Matzkin2; Alan Klide2
1Aquatic Animal Health Department, New England Aquarium, Boston, MA, USA; 2University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine, Philadelphia, PA, USA


An adult black sea bass (Centropristis striata) was presented with abdominal distension and decreased appetite. A large firm abdominal swelling was evident on examination. Differentials for this abdominal mass included neoplasia, abscess/granuloma, hematoma, normal gonad hyperplasia, or swimbladder abnormality. Diagnostics included survey radiography, positive-contrast radiography, and computed tomography. A barium enema was performed and radiographs indicated unhindered passage of contrast throughout the gastrointestinal tract. A gonadal tumor was suspected based on diagnostic findings. The sea bass was anesthetized with tricaine methanesulfonate. Water with anesthetic was pumped through tubing placed in the fish's oral cavity. The fish was placed in dorsal recumbency and passively secured in place by the slightly V-trough surgical table. A ventral midline abdominal incision revealed the descending intestines closely adhered to the irregular, tan-pink, red and brown, bulging abdominal mass. Adhesions to the mass were gently dissected both sharply and bluntly. Post-operatively, the fish recovered uneventfully in the holding tank. Radiographs were repeated eight weeks post-operatively, which showed no evidence of mass regrowth at this time.

Radiography and computed tomography have been previously reported diagnostic modalities used in fish, but to the authors' knowledge, this is the first report of a barium enema being performed diagnostically in fish. While surgical procedures are performed more commonly on fish in the research arena, few reports of clinical surgical cases have been described. This case supports conclusions found in previous reports that certain surgical procedures can be performed safely in fish.

Speaker Information
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Ernest Scott Weber, MS, VMD