ISSN 2398-2977      

Musculoskeletal: ultrasound-guided injection - cervical/thoracolumbar

pequis

Introduction

  • Localization, and injection, of cervical and thoracolumbar intervertebral facets are not always straightforward in horses. Anatomical landmarks may vary according to the horse's breed, age, size and muscular tone.
  • Ultrasound-guided infiltration of cervical and thoracolumbar articular facets, nuchal ligament (in cases of ensethopathy) and thoracic dorsal spinous process (in cases of impingement), can be performed as a diagnostic tool during lameness investigation or to produce analgesia.

Uses

Advantages

  • Ultrasonography is an easy and non-invasive technique that allows visualization of the intervertebral facets, increasing the accuracy of intra-articular injection, and decreasing the risk of pericapsular, intramuscular or neuraxial administration.
  • For nuchal ligament infiltration, ultrasonography might allow the direct visualization of the lesion and therefore a more accurate injection.

Disadvantages

  • The cost of an ultrasound machine and transducers, and the operator's level of experience with the technique should be considered as potential limitations.

Sedation of the horse might be necessary, but the cervical injections can be more difficult if the horse's head is lowered.

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

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Cousty M, Firidolfi C, Geffroy O & David F (2011) Comparison of medial and lateral ultrasound-guided approaches for periarticular injection of the thoracolumbar intervertebral facet joints in horses. Vet Surg 40 (4), 294-299 PubMed.
  • Fuglbjerg V, Nielsen J V, Thomsen P D & Berg L C (2010) Accuracy of ultrasound-guided injections of thoracolumbar articular process joints in horses: a cadaveric study. Equine Vet J 42 (1),18-22 PubMed.
  • Nielsen J V, Berg L C, Thoefnert M B & Thomsen P D (2003) Accuracy of ultrasound-guided intra-articular injection of cervical facet joints in horses: a cadaveric study. Equine Vet J 35 (7), 657-661 PubMed.

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