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Use of a novel helical fan beam imaging system for computed tomography of the head and neck in sedated standing horses: 120 cases (2019–2020)

Sabrina H. Brounts DVM, PhD, DACVS, DACVSMR1, Travis Henry DVM, DACVD2, Jane R. Lund DVM, MS, DACVR1, R. Chris Whitton BVSc, PhD3, David L. Ergun PhD4,5, and Peter Muir BVSc, PhD, DACVS1
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  • 1 Department of Surgical Sciences, School of Veterinary Medicine, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
  • | 2 Midwest Veterinary Dental Services, Elkhorn, WI
  • | 3 Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary and Agricultural Sciences, University of Melbourne, Werribee, Australia
  • | 4 Department of Medical Physics, School of Medicine and Public Health, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI
  • | 5 Asto CT Inc, Middleton, WI

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate the diagnostic capabilities of a novel helical fan beam CT system used for imaging of horses with clinical problems of the head and neck.

ANIMALS

120 horses.

PROCEDURES

Medical records were reviewed of horses presented for CT of the head or neck at 2 university hospitals. The following data were recorded: age, sex, breed, presenting complaint, sedation used for imaging, scanning time, procedure time, other diagnostic imaging methods performed, imaging diagnosis, clinical diagnosis, and complications during imaging.

RESULTS

Quarter Horses and Warmbloods were the most common breeds, and the most common complaint was nasal discharge. The head (101/120 [84%] horses) was scanned most frequently, and the most common diagnoses were primary dental disease and a space-occupying lesion of the paranasal sinuses. Nuchal bursitis was the most common imaging diagnosis in the neck region. Procedure time ranged from 20 to 45 minutes with a scanning time of 30 to 40 seconds. No complications with horse sedation occurred, and horses tolerated scanning well. An imaging diagnosis was more frequently achieved with CT (109/120 [91%] horses) than with planar digital radiography (23/61 [38%] horses).

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

The helical fan beam CT system had fast scanning times and could be used safely for routine imaging of the teeth and sinuses in horses. The caudal extent of scanning in the neck region was limited by the shape of the horse’s neck and thorax.

Contributor Notes

Corresponding author: Dr. Brounts (sabrina.brounts@wisc.edu)