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Treatment of Septic Common Digital Extensor Tenosynovitis by Complete Resection in Seven Horses

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To describe and evaluate a technique for radical resection of the entire intrathecal component of the common digital extensor tendon (CDET) in horses. Study Design

Prospective clinical study. Animals or Sample Population

Seven client-owned horses. Methods

Seven horses with wounds that resulted in septic tenosynovitis of the CDET sheath were treated by complete surgical resection of the affected tendon and ablation of the tendon sheath; 5 had previous surgery that was unsuccessful. Time from initial injury to complete resection was 1–22 weeks. In 6 horses, the wound was closed primarily using a closed suction (4 horses), penrose (1), or passive open drainage system (1). In 1 horse, the surgical wound healed by second intention. All horses had postoperative bandaging, antibiotic administration, and physiotherapy. Results

Surgical wounds healed primarily in 6 horses and by second intention in 1 horse. Follow-up (mean, 26.4 months; range, 18–38 months) was available for 6 horses; all returned to their athletic performance level without lameness or gait abnormality. Conclusions

Complete resection of the CDET was an effective surgical technique for management of chronic septic tenosynovitis. Clinical Relevance

Horses with infection of the CDET and its sheath may be returned to long-term soundness without gait abnormality after radical resection.

Document Type: Research Article


Affiliations: From the Royal (Dick) School of Veterinary Studies, Large Animal Hospital, University of Edinburgh, Roslin Midlothian; Large Animal Hospital, University of Liverpool, Leahurst, South Wirral; and the Weipers Centre for Equine Welfare, University of Glasgow, Bearsden Road, Glasgow, Scotland.

Publication date: March 1, 2004


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