Objective—To characterize amphotericin B–induced lameness in cattle and to ascertain the analgesic effects of flunixin meglumine by use of multimodal assessment.
Animals—10 healthy Holstein steers free from musculoskeletal disease.
Procedures—Steers were randomly allocated to a treatment or negative control group. Amphotericin B was injected into the distal interphalangeal joint of the lateral claw of the left hind limb of all steers. Treatment steers received flunixin meglumine at the time of synovitis-arthritis induction and at 12 hours after induction. Control steers received no medication. Multimodal analysis included vital parameters, visual lameness score, behavioral monitoring with accelerometers, pressure mat analysis, and plasma cortisol determination before and after induction. Data were analyzed by use of linear mixed models with treatment and time designated as fixed effects, accounting for repeated measures on individual calves.
Results—Amphotericin B injection induced moderate, transient lameness. Control steers were more than twice as likely to be lame as treatment steers (mean ± SD lameness score, 92.2 ± 8.1 % vs 40.7 ± 2.5%). Treatment steers placed significantly greater force and contact area on the affected foot and greater force, impulse, and contact area on the paired claw, compared with control steers. Furthermore, treatment steers spent considerably less time in recumbency than controls.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Amphotericin B successfully induced synovitis-arthritis in dairy steers that was transient in nature. Flunixin meglumine was efficacious in providing analgesia for these steers.
Case Description—A 3-year-old male alpaca was evaluated because of non–weight-bearing lameness (grade 5/5) in the left hind limb.
Clinical Findings—Clinical and radiographic examination revealed a closed, comminuted, nonarticular, displaced diaphyseal fracture of the left third and fourth metatarsal bones.
Treatment and Outcome—Initial attempts at treatment via reduction of the fracture under traction and subsequent application of a cast were unsuccessful, and more stable fracture fixation was pursued. The alpaca underwent closed reduction of the fracture, which was stabilized by the application of a 3-ring circular external skeletal fixator (CESF). Improved weight bearing on the affected limb was evident soon after surgery and gradually increased; full weight bearing was evident by the seventh day after discharge from the hospital (day 20 after application of the CESF). Lameness was hardly noticeable during walking at that time. After 3 months, complete fracture healing was evident and the CESF was removed; mild outward rotation of the distal fragment and metatarsophalangeal joint was present. A Robert Jones bandage was applied to the limb, and the alpaca was kept in a stall for another 4 weeks. Eleven months after CESF application, the owners and referring veterinarian reported that the alpaca was healthy, not lame, and serving as a stallion without apparent impediment.
Clinical Relevance—Although mostly restricted to small animals, application of a CESF can be a viable alternative for management of long bone fractures in South American camelids.
Objective—To describe the clinical findings, treatments, and outcome in alpacas treated for scapulohumeral joint luxation (SHJL).
Design—Retrospective case series.
Procedures—Medical records of alpacas with SHJL that were treated at 2 referral hospitals were reviewed. History, signalment, physical examination results, radiographic findings, treatments, complications, and outcome were evaluated.
Results—Records for 8 male and 2 female alpacas with 16 instances of SHJL were reviewed. Three male alpacas each had 2 recurrences of SHJL in the treated limb. The proportion of male alpacas treated for SHJL was significantly greater than the proportion of female alpacas treated for SHJL. Closed reduction was used in 2 female and 3 male alpacas; SHJL reccurred in the 3 males. Stabilization by use of a lateral extracapsular tension band suture technique was performed successfully in 4 male alpacas; in another male alpaca, reluxation caused by self-inflicted trauma occurred postoperatively. In 2 male alpacas, arthrodesis was performed but residual lameness remained 1 year after surgery.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—SHJL should be considered as a differential diagnosis in alpacas with thoracic limb lameness. Luxation may occur more frequently in males. A closed reduction technique may be used successfully to treat acute luxations. Extracapsular stabilization by use of the lateral extracapsular tension band suture technique was successful for treatment of recurrent SHJL and SHJL that could not be reduced via closed reduction.