Prolapsed Uterus in Sheep: How to Use a Pessary


 Ewes with lambs

Of the various unpleasantries that can accompany sheep farming, the prolapsed uterus is a particularly unwelcome trouble. Fortunately, a pessary can successfully permit farmers to prosthetically secure the uterus, even through lambing, until a veterinarian can surgically address the animal’s condition. 

Pessaries have been used for womankind for millennia: The first mention of a device to assist with symptoms of female pelvic disorders was described by Hippocrates in 400 BC. Women experiencing pelvic organ prolapse (POP) could be inverted on a ladder-like frame and vigorously shaken to move their organs back into place.

Modern pessaries have evolved from such ancient ladder-like contraptions, and are available in varied forms. In sheep, these are used either for the vaginal placement of hormones via an impregnated sponge, or as a “prolapse retainer,” as discussed herein.

lambs in spring

Ewes suffering from a prolapsed uterus require prompt attention. Only the largest of sheep farms is likely to keep pessaries on hand, so a veterinarian is likely the quickest source to secure one. If time allows, pessaries can be purchased online affordably.

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