Arthroscopic Osteochondral Fragment Removal in Horses Quick, Safe

Researchers found that their technique for removing ostoechondral fragments from the hock was efficient and had few postoperative complications.
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arthroscopic osteochondral fragment removal in horses
Researchers found that their technique for removing ostoechondral fragments from the hock was efficient and had few postoperative complications. | Photo: The Horse Staff

Researchers have good news for owners selling or managing horses with ostoechondral fragments (OCF) in the hock: A recent study has confirmed that arthroscopic osteochondral fragment removal in horses’ tarsocrural joints via arthroscopy is efficient, quick, and has few postoperative complications.

Researchers from Milton Equine Hospital, in Campbellville, Ontario, and the University of California, Davis, evaluated the surgical outcomes when veterinarians used a technique that involves resecting the proximal intertarsal joint capsule to expose fragments while using an endoscope to visualize their work inside the horse’s joint.

This minimally invasive method does not require the surgeon to open the joint with a scalpel to find and remove the chips, which can be associated with a greater likelihood of postoperative complications, said Pablo Espinosa-Mur, DVM, Dipl. ACVS, ECVS, of UC Davis

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Written by:

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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