What is the likelihood that a horse treated for septic digital tenosynovitis will return to its previous level of athletic function?
Article first published online: 5 JAN 2010
2006 EVJ Ltd
Equine Veterinary Journal
Volume 38, Issue 4, pages 337–341, July 2006
How to Cite
SMITH, L. J., MELLOR, D. J., MARR, C. M. and MAIR, T. S. (2006), What is the likelihood that a horse treated for septic digital tenosynovitis will return to its previous level of athletic function?. Equine Veterinary Journal, 38: 337–341. doi: 10.2746/042516406777749155
- Issue published online: 5 JAN 2010
- Article first published online: 5 JAN 2010
- Paper received for publication 18.10.04; Accepted 31.10.04
- digital tenosynovitis;
Reasons for performing study: Septic digital tenosynovitis is a serious problem in the horse, with a poor prognosis being reported for recovery.
Hypothesis: The occurrence of septic digital tenosynovitis would significantly reduce the likelihood of a horse returning to its previous level of athletic function.
Methods: Medical records of 90 horses treated for septic digital tenosynovitis were reviewed. Data retrieved included age, sex, location of inciting cause of sepsis, time from onset of clinical signs to presentation for treatment, and whether the horse survived to be discharged. Long-term outcome was determined through telephone questionnaires. Univariate analyses of categorical variables were conducted for each outcome.
Results: Overall, 87.8% of horses (79/90) survived to be discharged from the hospital. Only one factor examined was shown to have a significant effect on outcome. A delay of 1–7 days between onset of clinical signs and presentation for treatment reduced significantly the likelihood of the horse surviving to be discharged from the hospital. Of the horses discharged from the hospital, long-term follow-up was available for 72 horses, with 54.2% (39/72) returning to their previous level of athletic function.
Conclusions: Only approximately 50% of horses treated for septic digital tenosynovitis returned to their previous level of athletic function following resolution of synovial sepsis.
Potential relevance: Accurate figures allowing a realistic assessment of the athletic future of a horse following treatment for septic digital tenosynovitis are of value to both the owner and treating veterinarian.