To evaluate with CT the characteristics of brain tissue disruption and skull damage in cadaveric heads of adult horses caused by each of 6 firearm-ammunition combinations applied at a novel anatomic aiming point.
53 equine cadaveric heads.
Heads placed to simulate that of a standing horse were shot with 1 of 6 firearm-ammunition combinations applied at an aiming point along the external sagittal crest of the head where the 2 temporalis muscles form an inverted V. Firearm-ammunition combinations investigated included a .22-caliber long rifle pistol firing a 40-grain, plated lead, solid-core or hollow-point bullet (HPB); a semiautomatic 9-mm pistol firing a 115-grain, jacketed HPB; a semiautomatic .223-caliber carbine firing a 55-grain, jacketed HPB; a semiautomatic .45-caliber automatic Colt pistol firing a 230-grain, jacketed HPB; and a 12-gauge shotgun firing a 1-oz rifled slug. Additional heads placed in a simulated laterally recumbent position were shot with the semiautomatic 9-mm pistol–HPB combination. All heads underwent CT before and after being shot, and images were evaluated for projectile fragmentation, skull fracture, and cerebrum, cerebellum, and brainstem disruption.
Computed tomography revealed that all firearm-ammunition combinations caused disruption of the cerebrum, cerebellum, and brainstem that appeared sufficient to result in instantaneous death of a live horse. Hollow-point ammunition was as effective as solid-core ammunition with regard to brain tissue disruption. Brain tissue disruption was not affected by head positioning.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Results indicated that the examined firearm-ammunition combinations, when applied at a novel aiming point, appear to be reasonable options for euthanasia of horses.
To evaluate the diagnostic capabilities of a novel helical fan beam CT system used for imaging of horses with a range of clinical distal limb problems.
Medical records were reviewed of horses presented for CT of the distal limb at 2 university-based veterinary hospitals. The following data were recorded: age, sex, breed, presenting complaint, sedation used for imaging, scanning time, procedure time, other diagnostic imaging methods performed, imaging diagnosis, clinical diagnosis, and complications during imaging.
Most horses were Thoroughbreds and Quarter Horses. Procedure times ranged from 15 to 40 minutes, with scanning completed in 15 to 45 seconds for each region of interest. The foot or pastern region was commonly scanned (88/167 [53%] horses), with navicular bone disease diagnosed in 42 of 88 (48%) horses. The fetlock region was also commonly scanned (42/167 [40%] horses), with palmar or plantar osteochondral disease diagnosed in 17 of 42 (40%) horses. Horses were compliant during scanning, and no complications with sedation or damage to the scanner occurred. A specific imaging diagnosis for the lameness was achieved more frequently with CT imaging (166/167 [99%]) than with planar digital radiography (26/58 [45%]).
The helical fan beam CT system could be used safely to scan sedated standing horses from the carpal or tarsal region distally. Subjectively, the machine was easy to operate, allowing CT to be incorporated into lameness investigations. CT imaging was very likely to result in a clinical diagnosis in horses with distal limb lameness.
To evaluate the diagnostic capabilities of a novel helical fan beam CT system used for imaging of horses with clinical problems of the head and neck.
Medical records were reviewed of horses presented for CT of the head or neck at 2 university hospitals. The following data were recorded: age, sex, breed, presenting complaint, sedation used for imaging, scanning time, procedure time, other diagnostic imaging methods performed, imaging diagnosis, clinical diagnosis, and complications during imaging.
Quarter Horses and Warmbloods were the most common breeds, and the most common complaint was nasal discharge. The head (101/120 [84%] horses) was scanned most frequently, and the most common diagnoses were primary dental disease and a space-occupying lesion of the paranasal sinuses. Nuchal bursitis was the most common imaging diagnosis in the neck region. Procedure time ranged from 20 to 45 minutes with a scanning time of 30 to 40 seconds. No complications with horse sedation occurred, and horses tolerated scanning well. An imaging diagnosis was more frequently achieved with CT (109/120 [91%] horses) than with planar digital radiography (23/61 [38%] horses).
The helical fan beam CT system had fast scanning times and could be used safely for routine imaging of the teeth and sinuses in horses. The caudal extent of scanning in the neck region was limited by the shape of the horse’s neck and thorax.