Objective—To identify scintigraphic abnormalities in the pelvic region of horses examined because of hind limb lameness or poor performance and determine the clinical relevance of areas of abnormal radiopharmaceutical uptake (ARU) in these horses.
Procedure—Medical records were reviewed, and information on signalment, history, admitting complaints, physical examination findings, and results of lameness examinations was recorded. Clinical relevance of areas of ARU was determined by comparison with results of other diagnostic tests. For horses with clinically relevant areas of ARU, follow-up information was obtained through telephone interviews with owners and trainers and analysis of race records.
Results—Areas of ARU were identified in the tuber coxae (25 horses), ischiatic tuber (9), hip joint (10), third trochanter (10), ilium (5), sacral tuber region (22), greater trochanter (1), cranial femoral cortex (1), skeletal muscle surrounding the pelvis (34), or multiple areas (11). In 44 horses, areas of ARU were associated with the primary cause of lameness; in 51, areas of ARU were not associated with the primary cause of lameness; and in 33, the primary cause of lameness was not determined. Thirty-six of the 44 horses with clinically relevant areas of ARU were available for follow-up; 15 (42%) had a good outcome.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that pelvic scintigraphy may be useful in identifying abnormalities in horses with hind limb lameness or poor performance. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2004;224: 88–95)