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  • Author or Editor: Lawrence R. Bramlage x
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Abstract

Objective—To evaluate the diagnostic features, results of free-choice exercise treatment, prognosis, and postinjury racing performance of Thoroughbred racehorses with cumulative stress-induced bone injury (CSBI) of the distal portion of the third metacarpal and third metatarsal bones (MC3/MT3).

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—55 Thoroughbred racehorses with CSBI of the distal portion of MC3/MT3.

Procedures—Data on signalment, history, and radiographic, scintigraphic, and lameness examination findings were reviewed. Horses with lameness localized to the distal portion of MC3/MT3, and that did not have concurrent lameness but did have radiographic and nuclear scintigraphic changes consistent with CSBI, were included in the study. Information on pre-and postinjury racing performance was acquired from race records.

Results—Mean age was 3.2 years (median, 3 years [range, 2 to 6 years]). Ninety-five percent (52/55) of horses with CSBI raced after injury. Males were more commonly affected (75% [41/55]) than were females (25% [14/55]; odds ratio, 3.99 [95% confidence interval, 2.17 to 7.34]). There was no significant difference in postinjury total earnings, compared with total earnings before injury; horses had significantly more starts and less earnings per start after injury. Median time to first start after injury was 194 days. Of 45 horses that raced before and after injury, 31 % (14/45) had an increase in racing class, 31 % (14/45) had no change in class, and 38% (17/45) had a decrease in class.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Thoroughbred racehorses with CSBI of the distal portion of MC3/MT3 treated with free-choice exercise had a favorable prognosis with no appreciable decrease in class or performance.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

  • Gastric dilatation in horses may be primary (eg, engorgement, Gastrophilus sp infection), secondary (eg, to obstruction or ileus), or idiopathic, and may result in rupture.

  • Nasogastric intubation does not necessarily prevent gastric rupture.

  • Gastric rupture in horses usually is associated with gross contamination of the peritoneal cavity and death.

  • Successful surgical repair of gastric rupture in horses usually is limited to those horses in which the gastric mucosa is still intact.

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To compare articular cartilage from horses with naturally developing osteochondrosis (OC) with normal articular cartilage and healing cartilage obtained from horses with experimentally induced osteochondral fractures.

Sample Population—109 specimens of articular cartilage from 78 horses.

Procedure—Morphologic characteristics, proteoglycan (PG), and type II collagen were analyzed in articular cartilage of OC specimens (group 1), matched healing cartilage obtained 40 days after experimentally induced osteochondral fractures (group 2), and matched normal cartilage from the same sites (group 3).

Results—79 specimens of OC cartilage were obtained from horses. Ex vivo PG synthesis was significantly greater in the femoral cartilage, compared with synthesis in the tibial cartilage, and significantly greater for groups 1 and 2, compared with group 3. For groups 1 and 2, femoral fragments had significantly greater PG content, compared with PG content in tibial fragments. Keratan sulfate content was significantly less in group 3, compared with groups 1 and 2. Cartilage from the OC specimens had loss of structural architecture. The OC tissue bed stained positive for chondroitin sulfate and type II collagen, but the fracture bed did not.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Our analyses could not distinguish articular cartilage from horses with OC and a healing fracture. Both resembled an anabolic, reparative process. Immunohistochemical analysis suggested a chondromyxoid tissue in the OC bed that was morphologically similar to fibrous tissue but phenotypically resembled hyaline cartilage. Thus, tissue in the OC bed may be degenerative cartilage, whereas tissue in the fracture bed may be reparative fibrous callus. (Am J Vet Res 2005;66:1881–1890)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Objective

To evaluate the clinical efficacy of antibiotic-impregnated polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) in horses with open or infected fractures or joints in which internal fixation or external coaptation devices were used.

Design

Retrospective case series,

Animals

19 horses in which antibiotic-impregnated PMMA was used as part of the treatment regimen.

Procedures

Medical records of each horse were reviewed, and owners and trainers were contacted to provide additional information.

Results

Musculoskeletal problems in these horses included 10 fractures of long bones, 2 comminuted phalangeal fractures, 5 joint injuries, and 2 chronically septic joints in which ankylosis was stimulated. Nine horses had open fractures, 8 had closed wounds and developed infection after internal fixation of fractures, and 2 had chronically septic joints. Bony union was achieved in 15 of 19 horses. Twelve horses were discharged from the hospital and survived long term. Gentamicin sulfate, tobramycin sulfate, amikacin sulfate, and cefazolin sodium were used in PMMA.

Clinical Implications

Use of antibiotic-impregnated PMMA provided high local concentrations of antibiotics and should be considered in the treatment of horses with open fractures and acute and chronic bone and joint infections. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1997; 211:889–893)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the effects of treatment with platelet- and leukocyte-rich plasma (PRP) on future 2-, 3-, and 4-year-old racing performance of yearling Thoroughbreds with proximal sesamoid bone inflammation and associated suspensory ligament branch (SLB) desmitis.

Design—Randomized clinical trial.

Animals—39 yearling Thoroughbreds.

Procedures—Yearling Thoroughbreds with radiographic evidence of performance-limiting proximal sesamoid bone inflammation and ultrasonographic evidence of associated SLB desmitis were identified and randomly assigned to undergo PRP (treatment group) or saline (0.9% NaCl) solution (control group) injection at the affected SLB-proximal sesamoid bone junction. Race records of horses for the 2-, 3-, and 4-year-old racing years were obtained. Data regarding amount of money earned and number of races started were used as outcome measures, and results for groups were compared.

Results—Horses treated with PRP were significantly more likely to start at least 1 race during the 2-year-old racing year than were horses treated with saline solution; no significant differences were detected between groups regarding that variable for the 3- and 4-year-old racing years. No significant differences between groups were detected regarding earnings for any racing year.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Although PRP-treated horses were more likely to start a race during the 2-year-old racing year versus control group horses, results for horses in each group were not significantly different for the 3- and 4-year-old racing years. Therefore, the PRP treatment protocol evaluated in this study did not seem to improve future racing performance of yearling Thoroughbreds with proximal sesamoid bone inflammation and associated SLB desmitis, compared with injection of saline solution.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Objective

To compare fracture locations, repair methods, complications, and outcomes of horses with fractures of the rostral portions of the mandible and maxilla.

Design

Retrospective study.

Animals

89 horses with fractures of the rostral portions of the mandible and maxilla.

Procedure

Medical records and radiographs were reviewed. Fractures were categorized by fracture location and stability. Postoperative complications and long-term outcome were determined by clinical examination and telephone interviews with horse owners.

Results

4 fracture types were recognized. Fractures involving just the alveolar plate (33%) and those involving the alveolar plate and the body of the bone (32%) were most common and were often repaired by interdental wiring. Unilateral fractures of the mandible (11 %) were managed without surgery if stable. Unstable fractures were repaired with wires, a U-shaped bar (U-bar), or a bone plate. Bilateral fractures (24%) were often repaired with orthopedic wires in foals or with a U-bar, acrylic splint, wires, or bone plate in adult horses. In 2 horses, bilateral fractures were managed conservatively. Short-term complications developed in 24 of 89 (27%) horses. Soft tissue infections and wire loosening or failure were the most common short-term and long-term complications. Wire replacement was not required in any horses after release from hospital. Persistent draining tracts were most often associated with bone sequestration. Long-term functional and cosmetic outcomes were favorable for all fracture types and repair methods.

Clinical Implications

Although complications in horses with fractures of the mandible and maxilla are common, long-term prognoses for functional and cosmetic outcome are favorable. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;214:1648-1652)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Summary

Medical records of 59 racehorses with noncomminuted midsagittal proximal phalanx fractures repaired by means of lag screw fixation between 1973 and 1991 were reviewed. Fractures were classified as short incomplete fractures (7), long incomplete fractures (32), complete fractures extending into the proximal interphalangeal joint (13), and complete fractures extending through the lateral cortex of the proximal phalanx (7). Time from fracture repair to first race following fracture repair, number of racing starts, and fastest race times before and after surgery were obtained from race records and compared among horses grouped by fracture type and between horses that returned to racing and those that did not race. Five horses with short incomplete fractures, 21 horses with long incomplete fractures, 6 horses with complete fractures extending into the proximal interphalangeal joint, and 5 horses with complete fractures extending to the lateral cortex returned to racing. A significantly lower percentage of horses returned to racing following repair of complete fractures extending into the proximal interphalangeal joint (46%), than following repair of short incomplete fractures (71%), long incomplete fractures (66%), or complete fractures extending to the lateral cortex (71%). Time from fracture to repair for horses that returned to racing (mean, 14.7 days; range, 1 to 60 days) was not significantly different from that for horses that did not race (mean, 5.8 days; range, 1 to 21 days). For all fracture groups, median number of races before injury was not significantly different from median number of races after repair, and median fastest race time before fracture was not significantly different from median fastest race time after fracture repair.

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association