Bovis ISSN 2398-2993

Post-operative myopathy

Contributor(s): Gayle Hallowell , Alex Dugdale

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Introduction

Contributing factors
  • Myopathy and neuropathy are one of the possible causes of post-operative lameness in cattle.
  • This is much rarer in cattle than in horses.
  • Can be localized to one muscle group or very rarely have a generalized presentation where several or all muscle groups are affected.
  • Complex and multi-factorial etiology.
  • Clinical signs may take from 15 minutes to several hours to develop following recovery from anesthesia.
  • Myopathies are very painful conditions where animals present with a reluctance to move or stand.
  • Neuropathies will often look very similar, but if only the nerves are involved there is minimal pain, eg triceps myopathy and radial nerve paralysis will look very similar, ie that the cow cannot extend the elbow and use the body to propel the leg forward, but the former will be painful and the latter will not.
  • Myopathies and neuropathies may occur concurrently.
  • Many contributing factors are listed below:
    • Ischemia (poor perfusion, hypotension, occlusion of arterial supply or venous drainage, compartmentalisation, reperfusion injury).
    • Hypoxia.
    • Prolonged anesthesia time (>2 h).
    • Repeated anesthesia.
    • Poor positioning .
    • Poor padding.
    • Inadequate support/positioning.
  • Muscle groups that may be affected include:
    • Triceps.
    • Infraspinatus.
    • Supraspinatus.
    • Masseter in lateral recumbency.
    • Gluteals and longissiumus dorsi in dorsal recumbency.

Etiology

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Diagnosis

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Differential diagnoses

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

Other sources of information

  • Valverde A & Sinclair M (2015) Ruminant Anesthesia. In: Veterinary Anesthesia and Analgesia. Blackwell Publishing.
  • Clarke K & Trim C (2014) Anaesthesia of Cattle. In: Veterinary Anaesthesia. 11th Edn. Elsevier.


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