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J Am Vet Med Assoc. 1996 Nov 1;209(9):1597-601.

Use of diagnostic ultrasonography in horses with signs of acute abdominal pain.

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1
Chino Valley Equine Hospital, CA 91710, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To evaluate the use of abdominal ultrasonography as a diagnostic tool in horses with signs of colic.

DESIGN:

Prospective study.

ANIMALS:

226 horses with signs of acute abdominal pain were compared to 20 clinical normal horses.

PROCEDURE:

The following were performed in horses with signs of colic: physical examination, CBC, abdominal fluid analysis, placement of a nasogastric tube to obtain gastric reflux, abdominal palpation per rectum, and ultrasonography of the abdomen. Results of ultrasonography were compared with the surgical, necropsy, or medical findings.

RESULTS:

Ultrasonography of horses with primary small-intestine lesions revealed images of small intestine with a wall thickness of 0.2 to 1.8 cm and a diameter of 3.6 to 13.5 cm without evidence of motility. Horses with peritonitis did have evidence of small-intestine motility on ultrasonography with a wall thickness of 0.5 to 1.3 cm and a diameter of 2 to 5.1 cm. Horses with primary large-colon lesions or small-colon impactions had small-intestine diameters on ultrasonographic evaluation of 3 to 7.1 cm. In these horses, small-intestine motility was detected. If abnormal small intestine that lacked motility was detected by ultrasonographic evaluation, the sensitivity, specificity, and positive and negative predictive values for small-intestine stragulation obstructions were 100%. Detection of distended or edematous small intestine by abdominal palpation per rectum provided a sensitivity of 50%, specificity of 98%, positive predictive value of 89%, and negative predictive value of 89% for small-intestine strangulation obstructions.

CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS:

The use of abdominal ultrasonography. In horses with signs of colic is accurate for detecting small-intestine strangulation obstructions.

PMID:
8899025
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
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