Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Umbilical cord: premature separation

Synonym(s): Premature umbilical cord rupture

Contributor(s): Rob Lofstedt, Carla Sommardahl, Elaine Watson

Introduction

  • Premature rupture of the umbilical cord   →   the loss of up to 25-30% of foal's blood and thus compromises the foal.
  • Cause: short cord or disturbance to mare during second stage of labor.
  • See also torsion of the umbilical cord   Reproduction: foaling management  .
  • Common consensus of opinion in North America now is that this has been refuted and that premature rupture of the umbilical cord in not a significant factor in neonatal pathology.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

  • Disturbance of mare.
  • Short cord.

Pathophysiology

  • See Placenta: evaluation   Placenta: evaluation  .
  • Cord length usually ~70-85 cm.
  • Shorter cords predispose to premature rupture.
  • Cord usually ruptures about 6-8 min after delivery at a predetermined point about 3-5 cm from the umbilicus and is due to movement of foal or to the mare standing. Often the cord ruptures almost immediately. Sometimes the cord may not even rupture, the placenta and foal remaining attached for some time after birth.
  • Occasionally it is necessary to interfere during the second stage of labor and cut/tear the amnion to free the foal's nose. This should be done with care as if the mare is disturbed and stands up, the cord may rupture prematurely.
  • Premature rupture of cord   →   up to 25-30% loss of foal's blood volume and subsequently compromises the foal.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers


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