Doctors at the Al Khatam Veterinary Clinic operating under Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA) have placed back heart of a new born sheep to its actual place inside the chest through a rare surgery.
Thamer AlQasemi, ADFCA spokesperson said the one day-old, normal vaginally delivered full-term male neonate weighing 2.6 kg was brought with an externally visible, beating heart over the chest wall near the neck having difficulty in respiration- which is medically called Ectopic Heart.
"The doctors found no history of infection or exposure to radiation during antenatal period. Examination revealed cyanosis with heart rate- 89 beats/minute, respiratory 28 breaths/minute (at rest). The upper half of sternum was bifid, with 5 cm inter-ridge distance. The heart, lying outside the thoracic cavity was devoid of pericardium" he explained.
Thamer AlQasemi continued: "According to our veterinary doctors, Ectopia cordis (EC) is a congenital defect of animals in which the heart is located outside the body or abnormally in the cervical region, pectoral region, or abdomen.
"Other defects are often associated with EC including malformations of the great vessels, neck, ribs and sternebrae. The most common presentation of ectopia cordis is for the heart to be contained within the pericardium under the muscles in the ventral cervical region with a double apex facing craniodorsally. The ligaments of the pericardium are often attached to the mandibles and parotid fascia cranially, and to the first rib or manubrium caudally" he added.
Thamer AlQasemi thanked ADFCA veterinary doctors and the technical staff for performing the rare surgery to save the newborn sheep and praised their overall contribution to the protection of animal wealth in the emirate.