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Objective—To identify the prevalence of fragmentation of the proximal tubercle of the talus (FPTT) in a hospital population of horses, characterize the anatomic features of the affected area and fragments, and describe clinical findings, diagnosis, treatment, and outcome for horses with FPTT.

Design—Retrospective case series.

Animals—9 horses with FPTT.

Procedures—2,543 radiographic views of the tarsal region of 1,526 horses that were evaluated between June 2004 and December 2010 were reviewed. Medical case records for horses with detectable FPTT were retrieved, and signalment, history, clinical signs, diagnostic methods, treatment, and outcome were recorded for assessment.

Results—9 horses (median age, 5 years; age range, 1 to 12 years) with FPTT were identified. Seven horses were warmbloods. Diagnosis was made on the basis of radiographic findings, occasionally along with results of ultrasonography and CT. The only horse that was lame in the affected limb had a history of a prior traumatic event and resultant lateral tibial malleolus fracture. One horse underwent arthroscopy, but fragments were not found and were presumed to be extra-articular. Outcome was available for 7 horses; mean ± SD duration of stable radiographic and clinical examination findings was 3 ± 1 years (range, 1 to 4 years).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—FPTT appeared to occur more frequently in warmbloods and was not usually associated with lameness. Affected horses remained clinically and radiographically stable over time. These data have provided some information regarding the importance of FPTT for practitioners who perform radiographic screenings during prepurchase examinations.

Restricted access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association



Mesenchymal stromal (stem) cells (MSCs) have been studied to treat many common orthopedic injuries in horses. However, there is limited information available on when and how to use this treatment effectively. The aim of this retrospective study is to report case features, treatment protocols, and clinical outcomes in horses treated with MSCs.


65 horses presenting with tendinous, ligamentous, and articular injuries, and treated with MSCs prepared by a single laboratory between 2016 and 2019. Outcome information was available for 26 horses.


Signalment, clinical signs, diagnostic methods, treatment protocol features (prior and concurrent therapies, cell origin, dose, application site and number), and effective outcomes were analyzed. The analysis was focused on comparing the effect of different MSC treatment protocols (eg, autologous vs allogeneic) on outcome rather than the effectiveness of MSC treatment.


MSC treatment resulted in 59.1% (clinical lameness) to 76.9% (imaging structure) improvement in horses with diverse ages, breeds, sex, and lesions. The use of other therapeutic methods before MSC application (eg, anti-inflammatories, shockwave, laser, icing, resting, bandage and stack wrap, intra-articular injections, and/or surgical debridement) was shown to be statistically more effective compared to MSCs used as the primary therapeutic procedure (P < .05). Autologous versus allogeneic treatment outcomes were not significantly different.


A prospective MSC treatment study with standardization and controls to evaluate the different features of MSC treatment protocols is needed. The various case presentations and treatment protocols evaluated can be used to inform practitioners who are currently using MSCs in clinical practice.

Open access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research