Surgical and postoperative factors influencing short-term survival of horses following small intestinal resection: 92 cases (1994–2001)

Authors

  • A. J. MORTON,

    1. Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606, USA
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  • A. T. BLIKSLAGER

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606, USA
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Department of Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, 4700 Hillsborough Street, Raleigh, North Carolina 27606, USA

Summary

Although short-term survival rates following small intestinal resection reportedly range from 48–88%, there is little information on predicting which horse may or may not survive small intestinal (SI) resection and anastomosis. The aim of this study was to identify factors that contribute to nonsurvival in horses following small intestinal resection. Medical records of horses which recovered from anaesthesia following SI resection were reviewed. Clinical and surgical variables were evaluated for their association with short-term survival using logistic regression and were reported as odds ratios (OR), including the 95% confidence interval (CI), indicating the likelihood of horses not surviving to hospital discharge. Ninety-two records met the criteria for inclusion. Thirty-six (81.8%) of the horses that underwent jejunojejunostomy (JJ) and 34 (70.8%) of the horses that underwent jejunocaecostomy (JC) survived to discharge. Multiple logistic analysis indicated that postoperative ileus (OR = 29.7; 95% CI 2.5–354.6), repeat celiotomy (OR = 18; CI 1.7–187.6), and an elevated heart rate of ≥ 60 beats/min (OR = 5.6; CI 1.5–20.6) were the principal factors associated with nonsurvival. A low total plasma protein of <55 g/l (OR = 1.8; CI 0.5–7.6) was incorporated in the final model because its inclusion improved the overall validity of the model Clinicians should be aware of the factors associated with the greatest likelihood of nonsurvival following small intestinal resection, so that they can institute aggressive treatment and accurately inform owners on the likelihood of survival.

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