◊ Female Genital System (Udder and Teat) ◊

◊ Homepage ◊ ◊ Favorite Links ◊ ◊ Aseptic technique guides ◊ ◊ Anesthesia ◊ ◊ 1-Local Analgesia ◊ videos ◊ 2-Regional Analgesia ◊ Videos ◊ 3-Pre-Anesthetic Medication ◊ Videos ◊ 4-Basal Narcosis ◊ ◊ 5-General Anaethesia ◊ ◊ Suture Materials & Suture Patterns ◊ Videos Inflammation ◊ Necrosis & Gangrene ◊ ◊ Swelling ◊ ◊ 1-Absces ◊ Videos ◊ 2-Cyst ◊ ◊ 3-Bursa And Bursitis ◊ Videos ◊ 4-Tumors ◊ Videos ◊ 5-Sinus And Fistula ◊ ◊ 6-Hernia ◊ ◊ Blood Vessels Affections ◊ ◊ Hemorrhage & Hemostasis ◊ ◊ Fluid Therapy ◊ ◊ Skin Affections ◊ ◊ 1-Wound ◊ Videos ◊ 2-Burns & Scalds ◊ ◊ 3-Ulceration & Ulcers ◊ ◊ Bone Affections ◊ Videos ◊ Muscles Affections ◊ ◊ Nerves Affections ◊ ◊ Joints Affections ◊ ◊ Tendon-Ligament Affections ◊ ◊ Ophthalmology ◊ Photo ◊ 1-Ocular Therapetuics ◊ ◊ 2-Eyelid ◊ ◊ 3-Third Eyelid ◊ ◊ 4-Naso-Lacrimal System ◊ ◊ 5-Conjunctiva ◊ Videos ◊ 6-Sclera ◊ ◊ 7-Cornea ◊ Videos ◊ 8-Anterior Chamber ◊ ◊ 9-Anterior Uvea ◊ ◊ 10-Glaucoma ◊ ◊ 11-Lens & Orbit ◊ Videos ◊ Ear Affections ◊ ◊ Horn Affections ◊ ◊ Withers & Back Affections ◊ ◊ Male Genital Affections ◊ Videos ◊ Urinary System affections ◊ Videos ◊ Female Genital System (Udder and Teat) ◊ Videos ◊ Abdominal Wall Affections & Hernia ◊ Videos ◊ Respiratory System Affections ◊ Videos ◊ Digestive System Affections ◊ Videos ◊ 1-Diagnosis of Lameness ◊ ◊ 2-Forelimb ◊ ◊ 3-Hind Limb ◊ ◊ 4-Hoof & Claws Affections ◊ Videos ◊ Radiology ◊ ◊ Experimental Surgery ◊ videos Blog


Anatomical consideration: -

The udder of the cow and buffalo is composed of four quarters each of which is a separate unit and is considered as an independent compartment. Thus the affection of one quarter does not necessitate the involvement of the other quarters. In cow, the teats of the anterior quarters are longer than the posterior. In buffaloes the anterior teats are shorter than the posterior, so the anterior teats of the cow and the posterior ones of buffaloes are more subjected to injuries. The udder in ewes and goat is composed of two halves, right and left. Most of surgical procedures of the udder and appendages are performed on the bovine are the same adopted on small ruminants and other large species.



This may occur and can be present anywhere on the udder but are most frequently seen posterior to the last two normally-placed teats. These additional number teats may or may not have adjacent glandular tissue that will become functional. If there is a glandular tissue that has a functional potential, it will atrophy if not milked.

Treatment: -

It is better to amputate the accessory teats when that animal is young heifer, before the gland becomes active. It is essential to take care that only the supernumerary teats are removed and not those which are normally-placed. It may be desirable to remove the supernumerary teats for cosmetic reasons or because some may be so close to normally-placed teats that may interfere with milking procedures.

Procedure: -

1-Infiltrate the base of the teat by means local anesthetic

2-An elliptical incision is made including the necessary teat

3-Crush the tissue and the skin is then sutured in an interrupted pattern


It means that the number of teats is lower than the normal number in that species


It also known as Contracted teat orifice or hard milker, and it is either congenital or acquired as a result of trauma to the end of the teat.

Signs: -

There is a small stream of milk and the stenotic teat orifice result in prolonged milking time. There may be loss of milk due to incomplete milking or trauma to the teat due to attempts to obtain more rapidly by sternuous milking methods.

Treatment: -

The orifice should be cleansed, disinfected, local infiltration analgesia injected into the teat canal and then the orifice enlarged.  The enlarging procedure may be accomplished by the inserting of a teat knife. The opening in the sphincter is maintained at the desired size by inserting a Larson teat-tube and leaving it in place for 5 - 7 days. Milking is accomplished by removing the cap of the tube.


Definition: -

It is a condition of wide teat orifice leading to continuous dripping of milk at times other than milking leading to milk loss, and predisposes to udder infection. It is also known as enlarged teat orifice or Leaker, and it occurs due to a relaxed or a traumatized sphincter.

Treatment: -

The condition may be treated by injecting minute amounts of sterile mineral oil or lugol's solution around the orifice to reduce its size to the desired effect. This may have to be done more than once to obtain the optimal size for milk flow. If it is overcorrected and result in stenosis, handle as contracted sphincter or orifice.


Definition: -

This is a congenital anomaly characterized by occlusion of the teat orifice deposit the teat fills with milk at the time of lactation. It may also be acquired as a result of trauma at the teat orifice that results in healing with occlusion.

Treatment: -

1-A small amount of local analgesic is injected into the area

2-Insert a septic hypodermic needle where the opening should be located

3-Insert the needle into the teat canal until milk flows out; then withdraw the needle and enlarge the opening as described for contracted sphincter



Wounds of the udder and teats are most frequent seen in cows and the skin may be divided or only bruised

Cause: -

1-Treads especially in large pendulous udders animals that may even tread on their own teats when rising

2-Bites from dogs or by sharp objects like thorns

Types: -


They cause bleeding either into the gland ducts (bloody milk), or into the skin and subcutaneous tissue that either absorbed, as in other soft parts, or infected with formation of an abscess.


1-Superficial Wounds

They are wounds that neither penetrates the gland substance nor the milk ducts, they are of no particular importance. Considerable bleeding sometimes occurs at the base of the teat, but they can be treated on general principles.

2-Penetrating Wounds

They are wounds that open into the gland, associated with danger of the formation of milk fistulae. Though healing then appears to proceed satisfactorily, cicatrisation fails to occur, on account of the milk continuously flowing through the wound, which nearly closes, but leaves a little funnel shaped opening, termed a milk fistula. This is, however, only to be feared during lactation.

Injuries of the teat may produce cicatricial contraction, and consequent difficulty in milking.

Treatment: -


Bruises accompanied by the passage of blood-stained milk, treated by

1-Keeping the udder and the teats clean to prevent infection

2-Removal of the blood and milk by catheter

3-Application of poultices to stimulate resorption


Treatment of deep wounds of the udder directed towards induction of healing by first intention.

1-Recent wounds are treated on general principles of recent wound treatment, the edges of the wound are carefully refreshed and sutured, and it should be kept in mind that during lactation wound healing resists the most careful treatment, although they readily heal when the animal becomes dry.

2-The gaping of wounds of the teats and escape of milk can be prevented by applying a well-fitting rubber ring (not be too tight), or adhesive plaster.

3-The use of milk catheter or teat syphon allows milk discharge and ensures healing by primary intention

4-If immediate healing is impossible, treatment must follow general principles by following careful antisepsis, and prevention of infection extension, pus formation and cellulitis.

5-When teat fistula is formed, is can be closed by using caustics or by inserting deep and superficial sutures with using milk catheter during treatment, and failure of such treatment can be corrected by waiting the end of the lactation period then the fistula is closed by suturing or cauterising the edges with silver nitrate.

2-LACTIFEROUS OR MILK CALCULI (Milk stones or lacteolith)

Definition: -

Milk stones sometimes form in the mammary gland from organic substances with considerable quantity of phosphate of lime. They are rounded masses varying in size and number, and usually they are not numerous.

Diagnosis: -

Palpation of the udder or teat

Treatment: -

1-Calculi which do not enter the teat, seldom prove troublesome

2-Those which enter the teat can usually be removed by manipulation from above downwards with the finger and thumb

3-Larger calculi obstructing the teat canal can be crushed by means of special forceps

4-Failing of these methods may necessitate that the teat be opened at the base, the calculus removed, and the wound closed by sutures

3-GANGRENOUS MAMMITIS (gangrenous mastitis)

Gangrenous mastitis is commonest in sheep and goats

Signs: -

1-The disease starts as a per-acute parenchymatous mammitis with severe general symptoms like fever, loss of appetite, great weakness, pain, and straddling gait.

2-Local symptoms soon develop, the skin of the affected gland exhibits redness, with bluish-violet or black discrete spots, which on palpation are found to be soft, insensitive, and very cold. These spots quickly coalesce forming necrotic patches. They are surrounded by a crepitating inflammatory edema which extends along the abdomen, and even to the chest and thighs.

4-Milk secretion ceases, the lambs are hungry, and many of them suffer from sores on the lips

5-Later, the affected ewes are constantly down, groaning and grinding the teeth in acute pain, and after a short interval, the temperature falls, the animals show great prostration, with rapid, shallow breathing and small or imperceptible pulse.

6-Symptoms of toxemia then appear, and not infrequently death follows within twenty-four hours

Prognosis: -

In exceptional cases the local process is limited and dissecting inflammation sets and separates the necrotic tissues and may result in recovery

Prognosis is usually unfavorable, and in many cases excision of the udder can’t save the animal’s life, even if she survive, she will never regain her former condition, but remains weak and unthrifty.

Treatment: -

1-Surgical ablation or excision of the affected gland is the best treatment

2-In mild cases, early partial amputation of the necrotic portions or incision into the gangrenous parts with antiseptic dressing of the wounds may cause improvement

Technique of mastectomy: -

1-Aseptic preparation

2-An elliptical incision is made, including the teat and the skin is dissected from the affected gland

3-The vessels are ligatured, and the fibro-elastic suspensory bands are then divided

4-The gangrenous udder is excised and sutures are applied


Definition: -

The term teat fistula (milk fistula), refers to an opening in the wall of the teat, connecting the exterior to the pre-existing channel, the teat canal is characterized by persistent outflow of milk. Such fistula may be congenital or acquired. It is mostly acquired as a result of penetrating wound that extend to the teat canal or cistern and fails to heal completely because of the continuous drainage of milk. Fistulae vary in size from so tiny difficult to be located to large ones through which the mucous membrane may be seen.

Diagnosis: -

1-History and signs


Treatment: -

Fistulae can be treated by either cauterization of the edges of the fistula with caustic substances or surgical excision of the fistula and suturing of the recent wound. However it is contra indicated to carry out such surgery if mastitis is supervening or the lips of the wound are edematous, and this should treated before surgery.

1-The entire area is prepared for aseptic surgery by washing the field of the operation with soap and water, swap with alcohol. Tincture iodine should never be used because of its marked irritant effect.

2-Analgesia by ring block at the base of the teat and local infiltration analgesia of the edges of the fistula

3-Apply a suitable tourniquet at the base of the teat as much high as possible to secure hemorrhage during the operation

4-The wound edges should be debrided before suturing. If the fistula is old and the tissues around it have healed, the tract should be excised before suturing

5-Apply a teat siphon to guard against injuring tissues of the other side and to avoid excessive trimming

6-The teat fistula is then sutured and the suture is carried out in two rows including all layers with the exception of the mucosa using non absorbable, non-capillary suturing material. A vertical mattress or similar stitch is used to effect the apposition of the edges deep in the tissue and superficially. The apposition must be complete and firmly held in place or milk seepage will cause the fistula to recur.        

7-A teat bougie is applied to prevent adhesion of both sides of the teat cistern                            

8-An elastic adhesive bandaged is wrapped around the teat to reduce milk pressure on the sutures and to protect the wound

9-The tourniquet is then removed, the bandage removed after 5 - 7 days, and the stitches removed in 10 - 14 days post operatively

10-Siphoning the milk every with intra-mammary infusion of udder antibiotic ointment to guard against mastitis


Definition: -

They are hypertrophy and reflections of the endothelial lining of teat cistern that interfere with normal milking

Causes: -

Chronic irritation of endothelium of teat cistern

Treatment: -

Open teat surgery and removal of the polypes