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  • Author or Editor: Cathleen A. Mochal x
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A 3-year-old 639-kg (1,406-lb) American bucking bull was examined because of a 4-day history of right forelimb lameness that began after the bull sustained an injury to the right shoulder region while exiting the chute during a rodeo.


A 10 × 10-cm soft tissue swelling was present over the right shoulder region. Ultrasonographically, the contour of the scapular spine, bicipital bursa, bicipital tendon, and greater tubercle of the humerus appeared unremarkable; the swelling appeared to be a hematoma overlying the distal aspect of the scapula. No external wounds, palpable joint effusion, or swellings were noted on examination of the distal portions of the limbs. The bull developed atrophy of the supraspinatus and infraspinatus muscles with lateral abduction of the shoulder joint when walking. Electromyography revealed decreased innervation to the supraspinatus and infraspinatus muscles consistent with suprascapular neuropathy.


The suprascapular nerve was surgically decompressed by removing the entrapping hematoma and periosteum and performing a notch resection of the scapula; dexamethasone (40 mg) was administered prior to closure. The bull was discharged 5 days after surgery; no lameness was evident at the time of discharge. The owner was instructed to restrict the bull to a stall or small pen for 6 weeks. Four months after surgery, the muscle atrophy had substantially improved, and the bull returned to bucking.


Findings suggested that suprascapular neuropathy can develop in bulls secondary to injury and that suprascapular nerve decompression may improve nerve function, muscle atrophy, and gait.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To compare ocular structures of Quarter Horses homozygous for hereditary equine regional dermal asthenia (HERDA) with those of Quarter Horses not affected by HERDA (control horses) and to determine the frequency of new corneal ulcers for horses with and without HERDA during a 4-year period.

Design—Cohort study of ocular structures and retrospective case series of horses with and without HERDA.

Animals—The cohort portion of the study involved 10 Quarter Horses with HERDA and 10 Quarter Horses without HERDA; the retrospective case series involved 28 horses with HERDA and 291 horses without HERDA.

Procedures—Ophthalmic examinations, Schirmer tear tests, tonometry, corneal pachymetry, histologic examinations, and scanning electron microscopy (SEM) were performed in cohorts of Quarter Horses with and without HERDA. Records were reviewed to determine the incidence of corneal ulcers in horses with and without HERDA during a 4-year period.

Results—Corneal thickness of horses with HERDA was significantly less than that of control horses, but tear production of horses with HERDA was significantly greater than that of control horses. Results of SEM revealed zones of disorganized, haphazardly arranged collagen fibrils in corneas of horses with HERDA that were not evident in corneas of control horses. The incidence of corneal ulcers was significantly greater for horses with HERDA than for horses without HERDA during the 4-year period.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Alterations in corneal thickness, arrangement of collagen fibers, and incidence of corneal ulcers indicated that abnormalities in horses with HERDA were not limited to the skin.

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