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Objective—To determine whether triamcinolone acetonide diffuses from the distal interphalangeal joint (DIPJ) to the navicular bursa, diffusion is direct or systemic, and addition of sodium hyaluronan has an effect on diffusion in horses.

Animals—11 adult horses without forelimb lameness.

Procedures—1 randomly chosen forelimb DIPJ of each horse received an injection of 10 mg of triamcinolone acetonide plus 20 mg of sodium hyaluronan (group 1), and the contralateral forelimb DIPJ received an injection of 10 mg of triamcinolone acetonide plus 2 mL of lactated Ringer's solution (group 2). Synovial fluid samples were taken from both forelimb navicular bursae and 1 hind limb navicular bursa (systemic control group) at 6 hours. Triamcinolone acetonide concentrations in synovial fluid were quantified by use of high-performance liquid chromatography plus tandem mass spectrometry. Data were logarithmically transformed, and contrast analysis was performed on the 3 groups.

Results—Triamcinolone acetonide was detected in navicular bursal samples in all groups. Groups 1 and 2 had significantly greater concentrations of triamcinolone acetonide than the systemic control group. There was no significant difference between groups 1 and 2.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Triamcinolone acetonide diffused directly from the DIPJ into the navicular bursa in clinically normal horses, and diffusion was not affected by addition of hyaluronan. Injection into the DIPJ with triamcinolone acetonide or a triamcinolone acetonide–hyaluronan combination can potentially be used for treatment of navicular syndrome, but further studies are needed to determine whether triamcinolone acetonide diffuses similarly in horses with navicular syndrome.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To characterize clinical findings, outcomes, muscle characteristics, and serum or muscle concentrations of α-tocopherol for horses with vitamin E–responsive signs of muscle atrophy and weakness consistent with signs of equine motor neuron disease (EMND).

Design—Retrospective case-control study.

Animals—8 affected (case) adult horses with acute (n = 3) or chronic (5) gross muscle atrophy that improved with vitamin E treatment and 14 clinically normal (control) adult horses with adequate (within reference range; 8) or low (6) muscle concentrations of α-tocopherol.

Procedures—Medical records were reviewed, serum and muscle concentrations of α-tocopherol were measured, and frozen biopsy specimens of sacrocaudalis dorsalis medialis muscle and gluteal muscle were histologically evaluated for pathological changes. Fiber type composition and fiber diameters were assessed in gluteal muscle specimens.

Results—A myopathy that was histologically characterized by redistribution of mitochondrial enzyme stain (moth-eaten appearance) and anguloid atrophy of myofibers was evident in sacrocaudalis dorsalis medialis muscle fibers of the 8 affected horses that had low serum (6/8) or skeletal muscle (5/5) concentrations of α-tocopherol; these histopathologic changes were not found in muscle specimens of control horses with low or adequate muscle concentrations of α-tocopherol. All affected horses regained strength and muscle mass within 3 months after initiation of vitamin E treatment and dietary changes.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—A vitamin E–deficient myopathy characterized histologically by a moth-eaten appearance in the mitochondria and anguloid myofiber atrophy in frozen sections of sacrocaudalis dorsalis medialis muscle biopsy specimens was found in horses with clinical signs of EMND that were highly responsive to vitamin E treatment. This myopathy may be a specific syndrome or possibly precede the development of neurogenic muscle fiber atrophy typical of EMND.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association