Top Equine Surgery and Lameness Studies of 2018

Dr. Wes Sutter recaps studies on MRI for diagnosing hock problems, tieback surgery, evaluating suspensory ligament branch injuries, nerve blocks, and more.
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top equine surgery and lameness studies
Researchers found that a veterinarian's experience level did not impact his or her accuracy in identifying subtle lameness when using a computer simulation. | Photo: Kevin Thompson/The Horse

Each year at the American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) convention, three veterinarians review their picks for the top equine medicine, reproduction, and surgery studies published in the past year. Wes Sutter, DVM, MS, Dipl. ACVS, took to the Kester News Hour stage for the first time at the 2018 AAEP Convention, held in December in San Francisco, California. A surgeon at Rood & Riddle Equine Hospital, in Lexington, Kentucky, he shared some of the top equine surgery and lameness studies practitioners should know about.

RLP Duration: Finding the Sweet Spot

Equine veterinarians use regional limb perfusion (RLP) to treat injuries and infections in the lower limbs. Due to the area’s limited blood supply, it can be challenging to achieve appropriate medication concentrations in affected tissues when using systemic administration (delivered orally or intravenously). So, instead, they place a tourniquet on the limb and inject antibiotics into a vein below it to deliver treatment directly where it needs to go and keep it there for a specified amount of time.

However, veterinarians have faced the challenge of finding a balance between allowing enough time for the medication to reach appropriate concentrations before tourniquet removal and not treating longer than necessary

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Written by:

Erica Larson, former news editor for The Horse, holds a degree in journalism with an external specialty in equine science from Michigan State University in East Lansing. A Massachusetts native, she grew up in the saddle and has dabbled in a variety of disciplines including foxhunting, saddle seat, and mounted games. Currently, Erica competes in eventing with her OTTB, Dorado.

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