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Am J Vet Res. 2009 Jan;70(1):37-48. doi: 10.2460/ajvr.70.1.37.

Monitoring of the repair process of surgically created lesions in equine superficial digital flexor tendons by use of computerized ultrasonography.

Author information

1
Departments of Equine Sciences, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Utrecht University, 3508 TD Utrecht, The Netherlands.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate quantitative ultrasonography for objective monitoring of the healing process and prognostication of repair quality in equine superficial digital flexor (SDF) tendons.

ANIMALS:

6 horses with standardized surgical lesions in SDF tendons of both forelimbs.

PROCEDURES:

Healing was monitored for 20 weeks after surgery by use of computerized ultrasonography. Pixels were categorized as C (intact fasciculi), B (incomplete fasciculi), E (accumulations of cells and fibrils), or N (homogenous fluid or cells). Four scars with the best quality of repair (repair group) and 4 scars with the lowest quality (inferior repair group) were identified histologically. Ratios for C, B, E, and N in both groups were compared.

RESULTS:

During 4 weeks after surgery, lesions increased 2- to 4-fold in length and 10-fold in volume. Until week 3 or 4, structure-related C and B ratios decreased sharply, whereas E and N ratios increased. After week 4, C and B ratios increased with gradually decreasing E and N ratios. At week 12, C and B ratios were equivalent. After week 12, C ratio increased slowly, but B ratio more rapidly. At week 20, C ratio remained constant, B ratio was substantially increased, and E and N ratios decreased. Values for the inferior repair group were most aberrant from normal. Ratios for C differed significantly between repair and inferior repair groups at weeks 16 and 18 and for B beginning at 14 weeks.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE:

Computerized ultrasonography provided an excellent tool for objective monitoring of healing tendons in horses and reliable prognostication of repair quality.

PMID:
19119947
DOI:
10.2460/ajvr.70.1.37
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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