Flashcards in Colic in Horses Deck (25):
Broadly, what are the types of colic?
Those due to GI viscus:
-spasmodic/gas build up
Extra GI viscus
Are the clinical signs of colic diagnostic of abdominal pain?
No many things e.g. laminitis, nuerologic disease, botulism may cause a horse to become recumbant.
What are the clinical signs of colic?
Trying to go down/recumbancy
Abrasions (may indicate rolling)
Looking at flanks
Kicking at abdomen
What can cause colic?
What is the main aim of colic diagnosis?
Why is the decision important?
It is very difficult to determine an exact cause of colic. The main decision that needs to be made is whether the horse needs referral/surgery/can be treated in the field.
Important is that surgical cases prognosis is directly related to time to surgery
How can colic be worked up?
What needs to be done on arrival?
Observe from a distance to see if IMMEDIATE treatment is required.
What history should be obtained in a colic case?
Time of onset
Degree shown - may need specific questions
What should be focused on if the physical exam needs to be abbreviated?
Demeanour/signs of pain
GI Borborygmi (gut sounds)
If the horse has a high temperature what might this suggest?
Some sort of inflammatory lesion e.g. enteritis, colitis
What does higher HR suggest in colicky horses? Is this the same for resp rate?
Higher = more severe. Resp rate is a less consistent indicator of this.
What does GI borborygmi give an indication of?
How else can gut sounds be assessed?
Can ping the abdomen, not as good as in the cow but would indicate gas distension
How can abdominal distension be assesed? What does it indicate?
Look at paralumbar fossa
Ask owner - be careful not to lead
May indicate an LI problem.
If MMs are very red what does this suggest?
Why is passing a NGT considered as important?
It allows to see if there is gastric distension (lesion location SI/LI). If there is then can relieve this, if don't do this then stomach can rupture which is fatal!
How much fluid is considered reflux and what should/shouldn't be done next?
Should consider referral as SI problem
Shouldn't give fluids via tube
If the colic is not overly severe what should be done?
Monitor response to treatment
When would one administer treatment to a colicky horse?
Mild signs on PE & NO REFLUX
Is analgesia in colics ever a bad thing?
Not as long as one knows the correct response to the drugs. It is likely a horse requiring surgery will still show signs after pain relief.
What are the aims of a rectal examination?
Identify normal structures
Identify distension of the SI/LI
What does one need when performing a rectal?
What CAN be palpated on a rectal exam?
LI - dominated LHS
SI - only if there is a problem!
(Caecum, kidney, spleen, bladder, repro organs, inguinal rings, mesenteric root, aorta)
Why is a rectal exam not always a good idea?
Risk to you
Risk to horse (rectal tears)
Compare a normal abdominocentesis sample to that of a horse with severe colic.
Straw coloured = normal
Serosanguinous = severe