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Vet Surg. 1994 Jul-Aug;23(4):274-80.

Feline onychectomy at a teaching institution: a retrospective study of 163 cases.

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Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, Washington State University College of Veterinary Medicine, Pullman 99164-6610.


One hundred sixty-three cats underwent onychectomy from January 1985 to November 1992. Onychectomy was performed with guillotine-type nail shears (62%), surgical blade (24.5%), or both (8.6%), and wound closure consisted of bandages alone (61.3%), bandages after suture closure (26.4%), or tissue adhesive application (9.2%). The duration of surgery was significantly longer when onychectomy was performed with a blade or when suture closure was used instead of bandages alone (P < .05). Fifty percent of the cats had one or more complications immediately after surgery. Early postoperative complications included pain (38.1%), hemorrhage (31.9%), lameness (26.9%), swelling (6.3%), or non-weight-bearing (5.6%), and were observed more frequently after blade onychectomy (P < .001). Follow-up was available in 121 cats; 19.8% developed complications after release. Late postoperative complications included infection (11.6%), regrowth (7.4%), P2 protrusion (1.7%), palmagrade stance (1.7%), and prolonged, intermittent lameness (0.8%). Late postoperative complications were observed more frequently after shears onychectomy (P = .018). Use of tissue adhesive was associated with more postoperative lameness (P < .02) and, when used after shears onychectomy, with more infections (P = .049).

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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