Persimmon phytobezoar

Attention! This is a potentially life-threatening condition for your horse. Time is of the essence, contact your veterinarian immediately.Find a Vet

Persimmon Phytobezoar

Enteric Persimmon Phytobezoars, Gastric Persimmon Phytobezoars, Diospyrobezoars

Persimmons are a type of edible fruit which come from Diospyros trees.
Unripened persimmons are not easily digested by horses, and if ingested, can polymerize and form a gluey coagulum referred to as a phytobezoar. Phytobezoars are usually very hard and can cause a blockage in the intestines, causing a horse to colic.

Horses have also been known to like the taste for persimmons, causing them to consume large quantities, if they have access to a persimmon tree in their pasture. The fruit hangs on the branches long into the winter, which can increase the risk of a horse ingesting them, since available pasture may be more scarce in the colder months.

Symptoms

Acute or recurrent colic
Weight loss
Loss of appetite
Diarrhea
Intermittent lethargy

Diagnosis

  • History of ingestion of persimmons
  • Clinical signs
  • Physical exam
  • Gastroscopy

Treatment


TreatmentDetails
Oral or nasogastric administration of cola or diet Coca Cola
IV administration of fluids
Antimicrobials
NSAIDs
Gastric acid suppressants
Dietary modification to a pelleted feed
Cellulase
Mineral oil
Surgery
Intrapersimmon phytobezoar injections with acetylcysteine

Prevention

  • Do not give horses persimmon fruits as treats, or allow them access to persimmon trees in pastures.

Prognosis

Can be fatal without prompt, medical intervention by your veterinarian.

Scientific Research References

Good Overviews

  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon
  •  icon

Risk Factors

  • Persimmon trees present in or near horse pastures

Seasonality

WinterSpringSummerAutumn