Superficial Osteitis and Sequestrum Formation as a Result of Skin Avulsion in the Horse


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Metatarsal injuries with exposed bone are described in seven horses. Superficial osteitis and sequestrum formation occurred in six of the seven horses. The basic pathophysiology includes local vascular stasis leading to ischemic necrosis of osteocytes and establishment of bacterial infection within dead bone. Radiographic features of superficial osteitis and sequestrum formation include reactive periosteal new bone formation, an area of radiodense necrotic bone (sequestrum) surrounded by a radiolucent zone of granulation tissue, which in turn, is surrounded by an area of increased radiodensity (involucrum). The presence of a sequestrum may usually be confirmed radiographically by 12–14 days after injury. Surgical management included wound debridement, wound irrigation, bandaging or casting, sequestrectomy and skin grafting. Five of the seven patients required sequestrectomy, in one the sequestrum disappeared without removal. Mixed bacterial populations were commonly found in the wounds. No specific etiologic agent was associated with sequestrum formation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2-8
Number of pages7
JournalVeterinary Surgery
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1982


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