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Clinical signs, treatment, and prognosis for horses with impaction of the cranial aspect of the base of the cecum: 7 cases (2000–2010)

Ceri E. Sherlock BVETMED, DACVS1 and Randall B. Eggleston DVM, DACVS2
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  • 1 Department of Large Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30605.
  • | 2 Department of Large Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Georgia, Athens, GA 30605.

Abstract

Objective—To determine the clinical signs, treatment, and prognosis for horses with impaction of the cranial aspect of the base of the cecum (cecal cupula).

Design—Retrospective observational case series.

Animals—7 horses with colic attributed to cecal cupula impaction.

Procedures—Medical records were reviewed and horses that underwent exploratory celiotomy from 2000 through 2010 were identified. Horses with cecal cupula impaction and without other abdominal problems to which colic could be attributed were selected for inclusion in the study. Information regarding history, clinical findings, diagnostic testing, surgical findings and treatments, and treatments and complications after surgery was recorded. Rate of survival of horses to discharge from the hospital was determined. Long-term follow-up information was obtained with telephone questionnaires.

Results—Cecal cupula impaction without other cecal abnormalities was identified in 7 horses during exploratory celiotomy. Although clinical signs varied, horses typically had mild signs of colic and nondiagnostic rectal examination findings but were in systemically stable conditions at the time of the initial evaluation. Typhlotomies were performed and impactions were resolved by means of lavage and evacuation. All horses survived to discharge from the hospital and lived ≥ 2 years after surgery.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results of this study suggested cecal cupula impaction was a novel type of cecal impaction that was uncommon. Impactions did not involve the cecal body or apex and hypertrophy of the cecal wall was not grossly detected. Impactions were successfully treated with typhlotomy, lavage, and evacuation. Horses had a good prognosis after surgical treatment.

Contributor Notes

Dr. Sherlock's present address is Bell Equine Veterinary Clinic, 104 Butchers Ln, Mereworth, Kent, ME18 5GS, England.

No funding was received for this publication.

The authors have no conflicts of interest.

Presented as an abstract at the American Association of Equine Practitioners Annual Convention, Anaheim, Calif, December 2012.

Address correspondence to Dr. Sherlock (cerisherlock@hotmail.com).