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



To describe the clinical presentation, diagnosis, and treatment of a fragmented, migrating acupuncture needle near the palmar proximal interphalangeal joint (PIPJ) of a horse.


A 9-year-old Warmblood cross mare.


The mare presented for evaluation of a linear metallic foreign body on the palmar lateral aspect of the PIPJ following acupuncture treatment. The mare had a pinpoint puncture wound and sensitivity to palpation over the lateral aspect of the PIPJ region. The referring veterinarian performed radiographs and found a linear metallic foreign body near the lateral palmar PIPJ. Ultrasonographic examination demonstrated a hyperechoic lesion consistent with a metallic object in the soft tissues of the palmar lateral aspect of the PIPJ.


The horse was anesthetized, and the linear metallic foreign body was removed. The use of intraoperative ultrasound and digital radiographs assisted in determining the location of and surgical approach to remove the foreign body. The linear metallic foreign body was the fragmented segment (body) of an acupuncture needle. The mare recovered from surgery uneventfully and returned to the previous level of activity.


This report demonstrates the potential risks of prolonged retention and or delayed removal of acupuncture needles in the form of needle fragmentation and migration. It also demonstrates the use of imaging in determining the location and position of small, thin metallic foreign bodies to aid in surgical approach and removal.

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


To summarize the radiographic and clinical findings, treatment, and outcome in cattle with osteochondrosis diagnosed radiographically.


Retrospective case series.

Sample Population

29 cattle with radiographic evidence of osteochondrosis.


Medical records were reviewed, and owners or referring veterinarians were contacted for outcome assessment. Data were analyzed for potential interactions between osteochondrosis classification (osteochondritis dessicans vs subchondral cyst-like lesions), clinical and radiographic findings, treatment, and outcome, using Fisher’s exact test and descriptive statistics.


Osteochondrosis was associated with young, male, purebred cattle, clinical evidence of lameness, and radiographic evidence of concurrent degenerative joint disease. Osteochondritis dissecans and subchondral cyst-like lesions had similar clinical findings and outcomes but varied significantly in their radiographic distribution among joints. Osteochondrosis often manifests clinically as a unilateral condition, but bilateral lesions were often found (88%) when limbs were radiographically examined. Cattle managed conservatively tended to be culled (within 6 months of diagnosis because of lameness) more often than those managed surgically, despite the lack of treatment bias.

Clinical Implications

Osteochondrosis in cattle is often associated with lameness or degenerative joint disease. Conservative management does not result in a favorable clinical prognosis for long-term, lameness-free survival, and more studies need to be completed to evaluate the efficacy of surgical treatment of osteochondrosis in cattle. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1997;211:1566–1570)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


To determine whether exogenous isobutane gas infused into the udders of dairy cattle could be detected ultrasonographically, and if so, what effects volume of gas infused and infusion pressure had on how long after infusion exogenous isobutane gas could be detected.


Randomized block design.


8 Holstein cows 28 to 32 days after parturition.


In each cow, 1 mammary gland was not treated and the other 3 received 1 of 3 treatments by means of intramammary infusion: low volume-high pressure, low volume-low pressure, and high volume-high pressure infusion of isobutane gas. Mammary glands were examined ultrasonographically 1 hour before and 1,3, 12, 24, 36, 48, 72, and 96 hours after treatment.


After intramammary infusion of isobutane gas, bright echoes and associated acoustic shadows were seen ultrasonographically; echoes were no longer seen 72 hours after gas infusion. Percentages of mammary glands in which bright echoes were detected were not significantly different among the 3 treatment groups at any time during the study.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance

Results suggest that exogenous isobutane gas infused into the mammary glands to enhance the appearance of the udder of show dairy cattle can be readily detected by ultrasonography. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1999;215:366–368)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association