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Case Description—2 horses were examined because of vascular masses involving the lower eyelid.

Clinical Findings—Both horses had a unilateral, fluctuant mass involving the lower eyelid. For horse 1, the mass had been present since birth and had slowly increased in size over time. The mass also changed in size in response to various environmental stimuli, alterations in the position of the horse's head, and digital obstruction of superficial vessels adjacent to the mass. Horse 2 was brought to the hospital for euthanasia, and no historical or antemor-tem data were available. A combination of contrast angiography, Doppler ultrasonography, surgical exploration, and blood gas analysis (horse 1) and postmortem and histologic examination (horse 2) were used to determine that the masses consisted of non-neoplastic distended venous channels with anastomoses to the inferior lateral palpebral and angularis oculi veins (both horses) as well as the facial vein (horse 2). Histologic examination (horse 2) revealed large, endothelial cell-lined, blood-filled spaces within the deep dermis consistent with a distensible superficial venous orbital malformation.

Treatment and Outcome—Horse 1 underwent surgical exploration and ligation of the vascular malformation. Six months after surgery, the mass was markedly reduced in size, and size of the mass was static regardless of head position or environmental stimuli.

Clinical Relevance—Thorough preoperative planning with Doppler ultrasonography, contrast angiography, and blood gas analysis is recommended when attempting surgical correction of these malformations in horses. Surgical ligation can result in a successful cosmetic and functional outcome.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


To identify factors affecting the prognosis for survival and athletic use in foals with septic arthritis.


Retrospective study.


93 foals with septic arthritis.


Medical records were reviewed to obtain clinical findings, laboratory test results, radiographic findings, treatment method, and outcome. Race records for Thoroughbreds and Standardbreds were evaluated to determine whether foals subsequently raced and whether they raced successfully.


43 foals had 1 affected joint, 44 foals had multiple affected joints, and number of affected joints was not recorded for 6 foals. The femoropatellar and tarsocrural joints were most commonly affected. Osteomyelitis or degenerative joint disease were detected in 59% (46/78) of foals. Failure of passive transfer, pneumonia, and enteritis were common. Foals were treated with lavage, lavage and intra-articular administration of antibiotics, lavage and arthroscopic debridement with or without partial synovectomy, or lavage and arthrotomy to debride infected bone and systemic administration of antibiotics. Seventy-three foals survived to be discharged from hospital, and approximately a third raced. Isolation of Salmonella spp from synovial fluid was associated with an unfavorable prognosis for survival and multisystem disease was associated with an unfavorable prognosis for survival and ability to race; other variables were not significantly associated with survival and ability to race.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

With treatment, the prognosis for survival of foals with septic arthritis was favorable, whereas prognosis for ability to race was unfavorable. Multisystem disease, isolation of Salmonella spp from synovial fluid, involvement of multiple joints, and synovial fluid neutrophil count ≥ 95% at admission may be of prognostic value. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;215:973–977)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association