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J Am Vet Med Assoc. 2016 Aug 1;249(3):304-10. doi: 10.2460/javma.249.3.304.

Use of a laparoscopic specimen retrieval pouch to facilitate removal of intact or fragmented cystic calculi from standing sedated horses: 8 cases (2012-2015).


OBJECTIVE To evaluate the use of a laparoscopic specimen retrieval pouch for removal of intact or fragmented cystic calculi from standing horses. DESIGN Retrospective case series. ANIMALS 8 horses (5 geldings and 3 mares) with cystic calculi. PROCEDURES Physical examination and cystoscopic, ultrasonographic, and hematologic evaluations of urinary tract function were performed for each horse. A diagnosis of cystic calculus was made on the basis of results of cystoscopy and ultrasonography. Concurrent urolithiasis or other urinary tract abnormalities identified during preoperative evaluation were recorded. Horses were sedated and placed in standing stocks, and the perineum was aseptically prepared. Direct access to the urinary bladder was gained in geldings via perineal urethrotomy or in mares by a transurethral approach. Calculi were visualized endoscopically, manipulated into the retrieval pouch, and removed intact or fragmented (for larger calculi). RESULTS For 4 geldings and 1 mare, fragmentation was necessary to facilitate calculus removal. Mean duration of surgery was 125 minutes, and trauma to the urinary bladder and urethra was limited to areas of hyperemia and submucosal petechiation. No postoperative complications were encountered for any horse. When lithotripsy was required, the retrieval pouch provided an effective means of stabilizing calculi and containing the fragments for removal. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Use of the laparoscopic specimen retrieval pouch was an effective, minimally traumatic method for retrieving cystic calculi from standing horses. The pouch protected the urinary bladder and urethra from trauma during calculus removal and allowed for stabilization, containment, and fragmentation of calculi when necessary.

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