Mesh Successful at Preventing Nephrosplenic Entrapment

None of the 26 study horses suffered nephrosplenic entrapment recurrence following surgery.
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Mesh Successful at Preventing Nephrosplenic Entrapment
All study horses survived to discharge from the hospital, and a long-term follow-up revealed that 23 (88%) returned to their pre-surgery level of function. | Photo: Thinkstock
While we can’t avoid all types of colic, researchers recently confirmed that they can effectively prevent one type—nephrosplenic entrapment—from recurring, a potential problem with this form, by using a simple and safe prosthetic mesh.

A horse’s nephrosplenic space is a “shelflike” space located on the left side of the body between the kidney and spleen, just below the back bones.

“Because the horse’s large colon can normally move around within the horse’s abdomen, it can get stuck on this shelflike space and cause obstruction to the normal flow of gas and food through the colon, leading to pain and signs of colic,” explained Eric J. Parente, DVM, Dipl. ACVS, professor of surgery at the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine’s New Bolton Center.

Veterinarians typically perform a standing laparoscopic surgery on horses diagnosed with repeated nephrosplenic entrapments. Some choose to close (often with sutures) the nephrosplenic space to prevent future entrapments from occurring (the procedure won’t prevent other types of colic from developing, however). Parente and colleagues recently tested the efficacy of Proxplast mesh with titanium spiral coils at decreasing a horse’s risk of future nephrosplenic entrapments

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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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