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Abstract

The use of radiofrequency energy (RFE) has become increasingly popular in equine orthopedic surgery in recent years, particularly for the debridement of cartilage lesions and soft tissue resection. However, despite considerable advancements in the technology, the safety and efficacy of RFE have continued to be questioned. While studies investigating the use of RFE for chondroplasty in the equine population are lacking, there is an abundance of research studies in the human literature assessing its effect on healthy chondrocytes, and researchers are seeking to develop guidelines to minimize collateral damage. This review article provides a concise and thorough summary of the current use of RFE in equine orthopedics, in addition to discussing the recent evidence surrounding its use for chondroplasty in both the human and equine populations.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To raise awareness of the potential for intra-articular subchondral bone sequestrum formation secondary to a traumatic or septic process to enable more rapid identification of this uncommon but possible outcome in future cases.

ANIMAL

A client-owned 12-year-old Appaloosa mare.

CLINICAL PRESENTATION, PROGRESSION, AND PROCEDURES

The mare had a wound to the lateral aspect of the fourth metatarsal bone (MT4) that communicated with the distal tarsal joints. Radiographs revealed a displaced, comminuted fracture of MT4.

TREATMENT AND OUTCOME

The horse underwent aggressive debridement of the wound and MT4 as well as, on 2 occasions, needle joint lavage. Systemic, regional, and IA antibiotic therapy was also performed together with a bone graft from the tuber coxae. The horse’s comfort improved, and the wound appeared to be healing. Five weeks following discharge, the horse re-presented with a non–weight-bearing lameness and radiographs revealed marked osteomyelitis of the tarsometatarsal and distal intertarsal joints. Postmortem examination of the limb identified a sequestrum within the proximal articular surface of the third metatarsal bone.

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

The present report highlights the importance of arthroscopic lavage to visualize the cartilage surface and the benefits of advanced imaging to detect associated changes within the bone earlier than conventional radiographs. To our knowledge, no reports exist of intra-articular subchondral bone sequestra in the tarsometatarsal joint in horses.

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare 3 perioperative feeding regimens and their effect on anesthetic complications, manure output, and colic proportion in healthy horses.

METHODS

45 horses presenting for elective orthopedic procedures were randomly assigned to 1 of 3 groups: not fasted (NF; continuous access to hay perioperatively), fasted muzzled (FM; 10-hour preoperative fast with slow refeeding postoperatively and muzzle placement), or fasted not muzzled (FNM; same as FM without muzzle placement). Anesthetic protocol was standardized. Outcomes compared between groups included anesthesia time, arterial oxygenation, duration of hypotension, perioperative manure output, time to first passage of manure postoperatively, pain scores, and colic proportion. Comparisons were made with a mixed model and Fisher exact test with statistical significance considered at P ≤ .05.

RESULTS

No differences were seen in pain scores, oxygenation, hypotension, or colic between groups. Groups FM and FNM had a significantly greater mean reduction in postoperative manure weight (–81% and –70%; P = .003) and number of manure piles (–63% and –55%; P = .005) compared to group NF (–39% and –22%; P < .001; weight and piles, respectively). Mean ± SD minutes to passage of manure postoperatively was significantly shorter in group NF (238 ± 13 minutes) than groups FM (502 ± 174 minutes; P < .001) and FNM (444 ± 171 minutes; P = .003).

CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Horses with continuous access to hay prior to and following recovery from anesthesia passed more manure and passed manure sooner after surgery than their fasted counterparts without detrimental effect on anesthetic parameters and postoperative complications. Continuous access to hay perioperatively supports manure production in healthy horses without increase in anesthetic complications.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association