Repeat Colic Surgeries Don’t Always Have a Poor Prognosis

Of 22 horses that underwent a second surgery, 19 survived and were discharged from the hospital, researchers found.
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Repeat Colic Surgeries Don
Of 22 horses that underwent a second surgery, 19 survived and were discharged from the hospital, researchers found. | Photo: Anne M. Eberhardt/The Horse
It’s a common belief that horses undergoing a second colic surgery shortly after an initial one have a poor prognosis for survival. However, researchers at the University Of Florida (UF) College Of Veterinary Medicine, in Gainesville, recently found this might not necessarily be the case.

“Based on cases we have treated in our hospital, we did not find this to be true, which is why we wanted to further investigate these cases,” said graduate student Anje G. Bauck, DVM.

Bauck specifically focused on jejunal strangulation, a particularly life-threatening form of colic that occurs when a piece of the small intestine loses blood supply.

“If the problem is not corrected quickly or the affected piece of intestine is not removed, the horse will die,” she said

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Katie Navarra has worked as a freelance writer since 2001. A lifelong horse lover, she owns and enjoys competing a dun Quarter Horse mare.

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