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  • Author or Editor: Michael B. Robinson x
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Objective—To estimate the economic impact to veterinary clients for the medical and surgical treatment of rupture of the cranial cruciate ligament (RCCL) in dogs for the year 2003.

Design—Economic impact survey.

Sample Population—501 diplomates of the American College of Veterinary Surgeons (ACVS) indicating that their area of surgical emphasis was small animal orthopedic surgery or small animal general and orthopedic surgery and 4,000 veterinarians indicating to the AVMA that their professional area was small animal practice exclusive or mixed animal practice (at least 80% small animal).

Procedure—Veterinarians were surveyed concerning the cost for medical and surgical treatment of RCCL for 2003. The economic impact was calculated by multiplying the number of RCCL surgeries performed by the mean cost of surgery. This was added to the number of RCCL cases managed medically multiplied by the mean cost of medical management. This estimate for survey responders was extrapolated to the total number of veterinarians in the study population for the ACVS or AVMA.

Results—Estimates for the total cost of surgery were $171,730,134.72 and $1,020,167,907 for veterinarians in the ACVS and AVMA populations, respectively. The cost of medical management was $2,885,687.86 and $126,558,155.16 for veterinarians in the ACVS and AVMA populations, respectively. After combining the ACVS and AVMA populations, we estimated that owners spent $1.32 billion for the treatment of RCCL in the United States in 2003.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—RCCL is a prevalent, costly injury. Results may motivate veterinary and consumer agencies to prioritize funding for a better understanding of the injury. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005; 227:1604–1607)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To determine whether glutamine (GLN), tryptophan (TRP), and tryptophan metabolite concentrations are higher in cerebralspinal fluid (CSF) dogs with naturally occurring portosystemic shunts (PSS), compared with control dogs.

Animals—11 dogs with confirmed PSS and 12 control dogs fed low- and high-protein diets.

Procedure—Cerebrospinal fluid and blood samples were collected from all dogs. Serum and CSF concentrations of GLN, alanine, serine, TRP, 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid (5-HIAA), and quinolinic acid (QUIN) were measured.

Results—Cerebrospinal fluid concentrations of GLN, TRP, and 5-HIAA were significantly higher in PSS dogs, compared with control dogs fed high- or lowprotein diets. Cerebrospinal fluid QUIN concentration was significantly higher in PSS dogs, compared with control dogs fed the low-protein diet. Serum QUIN concentration was significantly lower in PSS dogs, compared with control dogs fed either high- or lowprotein diets.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—An increase in CNS GLN concentration is associated with high CSF concentrations of TRP and TRP metabolites in dogs with PSS. High CSF 5-HIAA concentrations indicate an increased flux of TRP through the CNS serotonin metabolic pathway, whereas high CSF QUIN concentrations indicate an increased metabolism of TRP through the indolamine-2,3-dioxygenase pathway. The high CSF QUIN concentrations in the face of low serum QUIN concentrations in dogs with PSS indicates that QUIN production from TRP is occurring in the CNS. High concentrations of QUIN and other TRP metabolites in the CNS may contribute to neurologic abnormalities found in dogs with PSS and hepatic encephalopathy. (Am J Vet Res 2002;63:1167–1171)

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To evaluate short-term postoperative forelimb function after scalpel and laser onychectomy in cats.

Design—Randomized, prospective study.

Animals—20 healthy adult cats.

Procedures—Cats were randomly assigned to the laser (n = 10) or scalpel (10) onychectomy group. Unilateral left forelimb onychectomy was performed. In the scalpel group, a tourniquet was used during surgery and a bandage was applied after surgery. Pressure platform gait analysis was performed prior to and 1, 2, 3, and 12 days after onychectomy. Peak vertical force (PVF), vertical impulse, and the ratio of the PVF of the left forelimb to the sum of the remaining limbs (PVF ratio) were used as outcome measures.

Results—The laser onychectomy group had significantly higher ground reaction forces on days 1 and 2 and significantly higher PVF ratio on day 12, compared with the scalpel group. Similarly, significant differences were found in change in ground reaction forces on days 1 and 2 and the PVF ratio on day 12, compared with day −1. No cats required rescue analgesia during the course of the study. One cat in the laser group had signs of depression and was reluctant to walk on day 2 after surgery, had physical examination findings consistent with cardiac insufficiency, and was euthanized.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Cats had improved limb function immediately after unilateral laser onychectomy, compared with onychectomy with a scalpel, tourniquet, and bandage. This improved limb function may result from decreased pain during the 48 hours following unilateral laser onychectomy.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association