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Surgical stabilization of traumatic elbow joint luxation and proximal ulnar fracture in a silvery langur (Trachypithecus cristatus)

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  • 1 From the Animal Medical Center, New York, NY 10065.
  • | 2 From the Wildlife Conservation Society, Zoological Health Program, Bronx, NY 10460.

Abstract

CASE DESCRIPTION

A 3-year-old 5-kg sexually intact female silvery langur housed in a single-species group at a zoological institution was presented because of acute trauma to the left forelimb.

CLINICAL FINDINGS

Radiography of the left forelimb revealed a type II Monteggia fracture (proximal ulnar fracture with cranial displacement and caudal luxation of the radial head). During surgery, disruption of the annular ligament and rupture of the lateral collateral ligament were noted.

TREATMENT AND OUTCOME

The langur underwent open reduction and internal fixation of the ulnar fracture and placement of a radioulnar positional screw, a prosthetic lateral collateral ligament, and a temporary hinged type 1A external skeletal fixator. The langur was returned to group housing, underwent behavioral training, and was periodically anesthetized for physical therapy sessions to improve range of motion of the left elbow joint. The external skeletal fixator was removed 4 weeks after surgery, and the radioulnar positional screw was removed 6 weeks after surgery. Three months after surgery, the range of motion of the langur’s left elbow joint was considered normal, and the animal returned to normal activity.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

For the captive silvery langur of the present report, surgical stabilization and postoperative management of a type II Monteggia fracture of the left forelimb were successful with recovery of elbow joint function. These techniques may be applied to other captive nonhuman primates, including those that brachiate or are members of social species that must be housed with conspecifics in the postoperative period to maintain group dynamics.

Abstract

CASE DESCRIPTION

A 3-year-old 5-kg sexually intact female silvery langur housed in a single-species group at a zoological institution was presented because of acute trauma to the left forelimb.

CLINICAL FINDINGS

Radiography of the left forelimb revealed a type II Monteggia fracture (proximal ulnar fracture with cranial displacement and caudal luxation of the radial head). During surgery, disruption of the annular ligament and rupture of the lateral collateral ligament were noted.

TREATMENT AND OUTCOME

The langur underwent open reduction and internal fixation of the ulnar fracture and placement of a radioulnar positional screw, a prosthetic lateral collateral ligament, and a temporary hinged type 1A external skeletal fixator. The langur was returned to group housing, underwent behavioral training, and was periodically anesthetized for physical therapy sessions to improve range of motion of the left elbow joint. The external skeletal fixator was removed 4 weeks after surgery, and the radioulnar positional screw was removed 6 weeks after surgery. Three months after surgery, the range of motion of the langur’s left elbow joint was considered normal, and the animal returned to normal activity.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

For the captive silvery langur of the present report, surgical stabilization and postoperative management of a type II Monteggia fracture of the left forelimb were successful with recovery of elbow joint function. These techniques may be applied to other captive nonhuman primates, including those that brachiate or are members of social species that must be housed with conspecifics in the postoperative period to maintain group dynamics.

Contributor Notes

Address correspondence to Dr. Spector (daniel.spector@amcny.org).