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  • Author or Editor: Beth M. Kraus x
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Abstract

Objective—To compare results (ie, return to racing and earnings per race start) of surgical versus nonsurgical management of sagittal slab fractures of the third carpal bone in racehorses.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—32 racehorses (19 Thoroughbreds, 11 Standardbreds, and 2 Arabians).

Procedure—Medical records and radiographs were reviewed to obtain information regarding signalment and treatment. Follow-up information was obtained from race records. Robust regression analysis was performed to evaluate earnings per start in horses that raced at least once before and after injury.

Results—22 (69%) horses raced at least once after treatment of the fracture. All 7 horses treated by means of interfragmentary compression raced after treatment, and horses that underwent interfragmentary compression had significantly higher earnings per start after the injury than did horses treated without surgery. Eight of 9 horses treated by means of arthroscopic debridement of the damaged cartilage and bone raced after treatment, but only 7 of 16 horses treated without surgery (ie, stall rest) were able to return to racing after treatment.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that racehorses with sagittal slab fractures of the third carpal bone have a favorable prognosis for return to racing after treatment. Horses treated surgically were more likely to race after treatment than were horses treated without surgery. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;226:945–950)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To report the outcome of surgical treatment of comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx in horses.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—64 horses.

Procedure—Medical records and radiographs were reviewed to obtain information regarding signalment, fracture classification, and treatment. Follow-up information was obtained by telephone conversation or evaluation of production records.

Results—Thirty-eight horses had moderately comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx. Two horses were euthanatized immediately. Fractures of the proximal phalanx in 36 horses were repaired with open reduction and internal fixation with a successful outcome in 33 (92%) horses. Reconstruction of the fracture was performed in most horses by use of a long curved incision, transection of the collateral ligament of the metacarpophalangeal or metatarsophalangeal joint, and open exposure of the proximal articular surface of the proximal phalanx. Twenty-six horses had severely comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx. Six horses were euthanatized immediately. One horse was euthanatized after 9 days of treatment with a cast alone. Severely comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx in 13 horses were treated with an external skeletal fixation device, and fractures healed in 8 of those horses. Six horses with severely comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx were treated with transfixation pins incorporated into a fiberglass cast, and fractures healed in 4 horses.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Moderately comminuted fractures of the proximal phalanx can be successfully repaired; however, fractures that are too severe to permit accurate reconstruction of the fragments remain difficult to treat and horses have only a fair prognosis for survival. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004; 224:254–263)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association