2022 journal article

Multi-Institutional Retrospective Case-Control Study Evaluating Clinical Outcomes of Foals with Small Intestinal Strangulating Obstruction: 2000–2020


co-author countries: United States of America 🇺🇸
author keywords: horse; colic; foal; ischemia; small intestinal strangulating obstruction; surgery
Source: ORCID
Added: June 1, 2022

Lower survival has been reported in foals than adults with small intestinal strangulating obstruction (SISO), but age-dependent outcomes have not been examined directly. Hospital records were collected from five US academic referral hospitals. It was hypothesized that foals would exhibit lower survival than case-matched adults. Foal cases 6-months-of-age or younger, and adult cases between 2- and 20-years-of-age were collected. Data revealed 24 of 25 (96.0%) foals and 66 of 75 (88.0%) adults that were recovered from surgery for SISO survived to hospital discharge. Sixteen of the total 41 (39.0%) foals studied were euthanized intraoperatively, whereas 30 of 105 (28.6%) adults were euthanized intraoperatively. Common lesions in foals that were recovered from surgery were volvulus (n = 13) and intussusception (n = 5), whereas common lesions in adults were volvulus (n = 25) and strangulating lipoma (n = 23). This study was limited by incomplete medical records, relatively small sample size, and lack of long-term follow-up. Unexpectedly, short-term survival tended to be higher in foals than adults and may have been partly driven by case selection prior to referral or surgery or decision-making intraoperatively. More optimism toward surgical treatment of foals with SISO may be warranted.