Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Musculoskeletal: rectal palpation

Contributor(s): Stephen Adams, Debbie Archer, Nicola Menzies-Gow

Introduction

  • Manual/digital examination via the rectum to detect musculoskeletal anatomical abnormalities or changes.

Uses

Musculoskeletal disorders

Advantages

  • Minimal equipment needed.
  • Usually well tolerated.
  • Can yield diagnostic information quickly.
  • Inexpensive.

Disadvantages

  • Can be dangerous to examine horse without appropriate restraint   Restraint methods  .  
  • Risk of rectal tears   Rectum: tear  .
  • Some horses will not tolerate careful palpation.
  • Cannot palpate cranial abdomen; can only palpate approximately 40% of the abdominal cavity (caudal).
  • Findings may not yield specific diagnosis.
  • Some ponies and foals too small to be examined; other diagnostic test such as ultrasonography   Ultrasonography: overview   may be indicated.

Requirements

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Preparation

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Procedure

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Aftercare

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers


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