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  • Author or Editor: J. C. Caron x
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Motion of 6 clinically sound horses trotting at a speed of 4 m/s on a treadmill was captured by video cameras before and 9, 16, and 23 days after amphotericin-induced lameness to determine the quantitative variables of three-dimensional computer-assisted image analysis that objectively describe carpal lameness. Amphotericin-B was used to induce lameness, and phenylbutazone (2.2 mg/kg of body weight, PO, once) and butorphanol tartrate (0.1 mg/kg im, q 6 h, to effect) were used to control discomfort. Four 60Hz cameras were symmetrically placed around the treadmill to capture 6 seconds of images from retro-reflective spheres taped to the trotting horses. Images were transferred to a video-based digitizer and a computer work station, where 4 files of two-dimensional data were reduced to 1 file of three-dimensional data. The effect of lameness on motion analyzed was assessed by use of two-way ANOVA. Differences between means were assessed, using the Student-Newman-Keul’s test (P ≤ 0.05).

Head and withers excursions, (dorsal vertical displacement of head and withers targets, respectively) during the sound forelimb support phase were increased significantly during all lameness measurement periods. Head excursion, but not withers excursion, during the lame forelimb support phase, was decreased significantly during all lameness measurement periods. Computer determinations of stride length swing phase, stance phase, forelimb abduction, and carpal and fetlock ranges of motion did not consistently characterize the lameness. It was concluded that three-dimensional computer-assisted image analysis could be used for objective lameness evaluation in horses and that head and withers excursions were the most consistent variables for assessing equine carpal lameness.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research