Objective— To describe a laparoscopic technique for sterilization of the male donkey using an endoscopic linear stapler (ELS).
Study Design— Clinical report.
Animals— Male Sardinia donkeys (n=6), aged 24–36 months.
Methods— Laparoscopic sterilization was performed under standing sedation or recumbent under general anesthesia. An endoscopic linear stapler was used to transect, and control hemorrhage of, the spermatic cord. Serum testosterone concentrations were measured preoperatively and at 3, 6, and 12 months after sterilization. One testis from each of 2 donkeys was collected at 12 months for histologic examination.
Results— Sterilization was successfully achieved. The only minor intraoperative complication experienced was hemorrhage from 1 spermatic cord stump, which was re-stapled. No other major short- or long-term complications occurred. Serum testosterone concentrations were <15 ng/dL at 3, 6, and 12 months after surgery in all donkeys. Testicular atrophy without evidence of revascularization was observed in the 2 testes examined histologically.
Conclusions— Sterilization of descended testes by intraabdominal laparoscopic transection of the spermatic cord is a simple practical method, with minimal intraoperative or postoperative complications. Testicular revascularization did not occur.
Clinical Relevance— Laparoscopic sterilization in donkey can be performed using an endoscopic linear stapler as an alternative to scrotal castration.