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Keywords:

  • Coagulopathy;
  • Point-of-care coagulation testing;
  • Viscoelastic coagulation testing

Background: Coagulopathies in horses with gastrointestinal disease are frequently identified and associated with morbidity and fatality.

Objective: Determine if thrombelastography (TEG) identifies abnormalities associated with lesion type, presence of systemic inflammatory response syndrome (SIRS), morbidity, and fatality more consistently than traditional coagulation testing.

Animals: One-hundred and one horses examined for gastrointestinal disease and 20 healthy horses.

Methods: TEG, tissue factor (TF)-TEG, and traditional coagulation panels parameters and percentages of horses with coagulopathies were compared for lesion type, presence of SIRS, complications, and survival.

Results: Changes in individual parameters and increased incidence of coagulopathies were associated with fatality (R, P= .007; k-value [K], P= .004; clot lysis [CL]30, P= .037; CL60, P= .050; angle [Ang], P= .0003; maximum amplitude [MA], P= .006; lysis [Ly]30, P= .042; Ly60, P= .027; CI, P= .0004; ≥ 2 TEG coagulopathies, P= .013; ≥ 3 TEG coagulopathies, P= .038; TF-R, P= .037; TF-K, P= .004; TF-CL30, P < .0001; TF-CL60, P < .0001; TF-Ang, P= .005; TF-Ly30, P= .0002; TF-Ly60, P < .0001; TF-CI, P= .043; ≥ 1 TF-TEG coagulopathies, P= .003; ≥ 2 TF-TEG coagulopathies, P= .0004; prothrombin tme [PT], P < .0001; activated partial throboplastin time [aPTT], P= .021), inflammatory lesions (MA, P= .013; TF-CL30, P= .033; TF-CL60, P= .010; TF-Ly60, P= .011; ≥ 1 TF-TEG coagulopathy, P= .036; ≥ 2 TF-TEG coagulopathy, P= .0007; PT, P= .0005; fibrinogen, P= .019), SIRS (MA, P= .004; TF-CL30, P= .019; TF-CL60, P= .013; TF-Ly30, P= .020; TF-Ly60, P= .010; PT, P < .0001; aPTT, P= .032; disseminated intravascular coagulation, P= .005), and complications (ileus: aPTT, P= .020; diarrhea: TF-CL30, P= .040; TF-Ly30, P= .041; thrombophlebitis: ≥ 1 TF-TEG coagulopathy, P= .018; laminitis: MA, P= .004; CL60, P= .045; CI, P= .036; TF-MA, P= .019; TF-TEG CI, P= .019). Abnormalities in TEG and TF-TEG parameters were indicative of hypocoagulation and hypofibrinolysis.

Conclusions and Clinical Importance: TEG identifies changes in coagulation and fibrinolysis associated with lesion type, SIRS, morbidity, and fatality in horses with gastrointestinal disease.