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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine clinical features of horses with bacterial meningitis or brain abscesses secondary to infectious disease processes involving the head.

Design—Retrospective study.

Animals—7 adult horses.

Procedure—Medical records of Tufts University, the University of Pennsylvania, and the Livestock Disease Diagnostic Center (Lexington, Ky) were reviewed to identify adult (> 12 months old) horses in which a postmortem diagnosis of bacterial meningitis or brain abscess had been made. Horses were included in the study if an intracranial infection was confirmed, the horse had a primary infectious disease process involving the head, and there were no signs of systemic infection.

Results—23 adult horses with bacterial meningitis or a brain abscess were examined during the study period, but only 7 met the criteria for inclusion in the study. Primary sites of infection included the paranasal sinuses, nasal cavity, periocular tissues, and submandibular lymph nodes. Three horses died suddenly prior to hospitalization, and 1 horse was hospitalized but died 7 days after the onset of neurologic abnormalities. The remaining 3 horses were euthanatized because of a rapid deterioration in clinical status.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Although rare, fatal intracranial complications can develop in horses with infectious diseases involving the head. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004;224:739–742)

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To develop a transcutaneous ultrasonography (TUS) method for measuring the location of the stomach during various levels of fluid distension and evaluate any correlation between gastric fluid distension and stomach position.

Animals—6 adult horses.

Procedures—Known volumes of water were administered in 2 trials. In trial 1, the stomach was evaluated prior to and after the administration of 2, 4, and 6 L of water. In trial 2, the stomach was evaluated after administration of 6, 8, 10, and 12 L of water. The TUS was performed at the 7th through 16th left intercostal spaces (ICSs). For each volume of water, an image was captured at the most dorsal point in each ICS where the dorsolateral aspect of the stomach wall was viewed. The distance between this point and a horizontal line drawn on the skin at the level of the elbow joint was measured. The measurements at all ICSs were used to estimate the gastric wall height at ICS 12, which was subsequently evaluated for statistical association with volume administered.

Results—Significant correlation between the estimated height of the stomach wall at ICS 12 and the volume of fluid administered was detected. A regression equation to estimate gastric fluid volume when initial values for gastric wall height (cm) at ICS 12 and fluid volume (L) are known was developed.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggested that use of TUS for gastric fluid volume estimation is a potentially useful technique.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the feasibility of the use of Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy within the midinfrared range to differentiate synovial fluid samples of joints with osteochondrosis from those of control samples.

Animals—33 horses with osteochondrosis of the tarsocrural joint and 31 horses free of tarsocrural joint disease.

Procedures—FTIR spectroscopy of synovial fluid was used. Sixty-four synovial fluid samples from the tarsocrural joint were collected. Of these, 33 samples were from horses with radiographic evidence of osteochondrosis of the tarsocrural joint and 31 from control joints. Disease-associated features within infrared spectra of synovial fluid were statistically selected for spectral classification, and the variables identified were used in a classification model. Linear discriminant analysis and leave-one-out cross-validation were used to develop a classifier to identify joints with osteochondrosis.

Results—12 significant subregions were identified that met the selection criteria. The stepwise discriminant procedure resulted in the final selection of 6 optimal regions that most contributed to the discriminatory power of the classification algorithm. Infrared spectra derived from synovial fluid of joints with osteochondrosis were differentiated from the control samples with accuracy of 77% (81% specificity and 73% sensitivity).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The disease-associated characteristics of infrared spectra of synovial fluid from joints with osteochondrosis may be exploited via appropriate feature selection and classification algorithms to differentiate joints with osteochondrosis from those of control joints. Further study with larger sample size including age-, breed-, and sex-matched control horses would further validate the clinical value of infrared spectroscopy for the diagnosis of osteochondrosis in horses.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate use of infrared spectroscopy for diagnosis of traumatic arthritis in horses.

Animals—48 horses with traumatic arthritis and 5 clinically and radiographically normal horses.

Procedures—Synovial fluid samples were collected from 77 joints in 48 horses with traumatic arthritis. Paired samples (affected and control joints) from 29 horses and independent samples from an affected (n = 12) or control (7) joint from 19 horses were collected for model calibration. A second set of 20 normal validation samples was collected from 5 clinically and radiographically normal horses. Fourier transform infrared spectra of synovial fluids were acquired and manipulated, and data from affected joints were compared with controls to identify spectroscopic features that differed significantly between groups. A classification model that used linear discriminant analysis was developed. Performance of the model was determined by use of the 2 validation datasets.

Results—A classification model based on 3 infrared regions classified spectra from the calibration dataset with overall accuracy of 97% (sensitivity, 93%; specificity, 100%). The model, with cost-adjusted prior probabilities of 0.60:0.40, yielded overall accuracy of 89% (sensitivity, 83%; specificity, 100%) for the first validation sample dataset and 100% correct classification of the second set of independent normal control joints.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The infrared spectroscopic patterns of fluid from joints with traumatic arthritis differed significantly from the corresponding patterns for controls. These alterations in absorption patterns may be used via an appropriate classification algorithm to differentiate the spectra of affected joints from those of controls.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research