Sadie's Autopsy Results


Chameleon Enthusiast
Dr. Mader called me yesterday evening with the autopsy results. He has a tendency to talk over my head and I was so out of it yesterday I had ask Dr. Alfonso to call him this morning. Sadie had Coelomitis. He said it was pretty bad and that she must have had it for a while since the damage was seen all the way to the heart and lungs. He repeated to Dr. Alfonso that even if he had done surgery they wouldn't have been able to save her. Dr. Alfonso said it is yet another freak accident that happens and makes you wonder just how common it really is as too many people find their chameleons gone after laying eggs.

From what I understand from talking to both vets is that Sadie’s ovary ruptured and the yoke had spread all around inside her body.

Dr. Mader sent me Sadie’s body overnight this morning so tomorrow we will be able to give her a proper burial next to her Grandpa Luie and Grandma Camille.

Here's some info I found when I googles Coelomitis. There's more info on google if any are interested.
Yolk coelomitis is a major cause of death in captive sexually mature female Fiji Island banded iguanas (Brachylophus fasciatus) maintained by the Zoological Society of San Diego. The medical records, breeding histories, and pathology archival materials from this group were reviewed to study this health problem. From 1987 through 2004, deaths of nine of 21 adult females were due to yolk coelomitis. Most iguanas had a history of reproduction-related problems, which included reproductive failure, episodes of lethargy associated with ovarian activity, folliculostasis, ovostasis, and behavioral abnormalities. Most affected iguanas either were found dead or presented moribund and subsequently died or were euthanized. Clinical signs were nonspecific and included lethargy, cutaneous discoloration, and coelomic effusion. Yolk leakage in most cases was associated with the presence of large vitellogenic follicles undergoing atresia and resulted in coelomitis characterized by florid mesothelial proliferation.
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thats to bad Jann - but at least you know what happened , I am sure it was very hard - but the not knowing is one of the things I hate the most- at least you have answers , and can now lay your baby to rest with out wondering the "what if I had done....., would she have made it" ~ I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers , again, so so very sorry for your loss
I'm so sorry to hear about her Jan!

I lost my very first rescue cham to this. I'd first seen this lovely female jax at a small mom & pop pet shop. They were wonderful folks who really cared about their animals. They had bought a pair of jax from a clueless wholesaler and had the usual problems with them but, as I began trying to help we became friends. They did everything I suggested, but eventually lost the male. The female was also in bad shape. They were so worried they asked if I would take her home and gave me supplies I needed for free. I remember her lying in my sink too weak to raise her head but still trying to lick water off the porcelain. I've never had a cham so close to death fight her way back successfully. A few months later she was twice the size, opinionated, healthy and active. I brought her back to the shop but they just gave her to me. She lived quite a while longer, but died suddenly from what we think was the same problem. Autopsy showed what looked like ruptured ovary, peritonitis and this yolky substance everywhere.
I am so sorry to hear this Jann. I know how much you love your little ones and this has to be very hard, but like was said, you at least have a reason why it happened. Still sucks though.
I am so sorry that Sadie had to pass away from this. There was nothing that could have been done, because I know if there were, that you would have done everything and anything to save her. Thank you for sharing her story and educating all of us on just one other thing that can go wrong with these amazing creatures. RIP Sadie...
That's what I was suspicious of based on how quickly she went downhill around egg laying time. :( So sad when that happens because it is hard to find until it's too late, and even when it is found it's very difficult to treat in time.

From what I understand from talking to both vets is that Sadie’s ovary ruptured and the yoke had spread all around inside her body.
Yep, that's exactly it. Either the reproductive tract or an egg ruptures and the yoke basically turns the entire coelom (main body cavity) into a big sticky mess that then becomes a huge infection.
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Im glad you at least know what happened, even if it makes it not at all easier for you to have lost her.
thank you for taking the time and effort to help the community learn
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