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  • Author or Editor: Heikki J. Helminen x
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Objective—To evaluate the effects of intra-articular (IA) injections of bufexamac in horses, focusing particularly on the effects of bufexamac on articular cartilage.

Animals—20 Standardbreds.

Procedure—Horses were randomly allocated into 4 groups consisting of 5 horses each, and 20, 60, or 100 mg of bufexamac or 1 ml of sterile saline (0.9% NaCl) solution (control) was injected into 1 intercarpal joint at weekly intervals for 6 treatments (days 0, 7, 14, 21, 28, and 35). Clinical signs and results of hematologic, serum biochemical, and synovial fluid (SF) analyses and radiography were used to evaluate treatment effects. On day 49, all horses were euthanatized; gross necropsy and histologic examinations of internal organs and articular tissues were performed. Glycosaminoglycan concentration of the articular cartilage was evaluated in safranin O-stained sections by use of a semiquantitative microspectrophotometric method.

Results—No systemic signs were observed. Temporary mild to moderate heat and effusion were the only clinical signs observed in a number of joints after IA injections and more often only in the 100 mg group, compared with controls. The 100 mg dose resulted in significant increases in SF WBC counts, with relative neutrophilia and SF total protein concentration 24 hours after injection (day 1). No lesions suggestive of toxic effects were detected at necropsy or on histologic examination. No changes in articular cartilage glycosaminoglycan concentration were detected.

Conclusion and Clinical Relevance—Six injections of 20, 60, or 100 mg of bufexamac at weekly intervals did not cause any untoward systemic or local effects. These data suggest that bufexamac is a safe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug for IA administration in horses. (Am J Vet Res 2001;62:1629–1635)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To determine the speed of sound (SOS) in equine articular cartilage and investigate the influence of age, site in the joint, and cartilage degeneration on the SOS.

Sample Population—Cartilage samples from 38 metacarpophalangeal joints of 38 horses (age range, 5 months to 22 years).

Procedure—Osteochondral plugs were collected from 2 articular sites of the proximal phalanx after the degenerative state was characterized by use of the cartilage degeneration index (CDI) technique. The SOS was calculated (ratio of needle-probe cartilage thickness to time of flight of the ultrasound pulse), and relationships between SOS value and age, site, and cartilage degeneration were evaluated. An analytical model of cartilage indentation was used to evaluate the effect of variation in true SOS on the determination of cartilage thickness and dynamic modulus with the ultrasound indentation technique.

Results—The mean SOS for all samples was 1,696 ± 126 m/s. Age, site, and cartilage degeneration had no significant influence on the SOS in cartilage. The analytical model revealed that use of the mean SOS of 1,696 m/s was associated with maximum errors of 17.5% on cartilage thickness and 7.0% on dynamic modulus in an SOS range that covered 95% of the individual measurements.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In equine articular cartilage, use of mean SOS of 1,696 m/s in ultrasound indentation measurements introduces some inaccuracy on cartilage thickness determinations, but the dynamic modulus of cartilage can be estimated with acceptable accuracy in horses regardless of age, site in the joint, or stage of cartilage degeneration. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:1175–1180)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research