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February 2013

Horse: Vertebral column, second cervical vertebra: Severe, comminuted fracture
of the caudal vertebral body area with multifocal to coalescing acute hemorrhages

02_13

History:

Horse, warmblood mare, 21 years.

Diagnosis:

Vertebral column, second cervical vertebra: Severe, comminuted fracture of the caudal vertebral body area with multifocal to coalescing acute hemorrhages.

Description:

The caudal portion of the second cervical vertebra presented with a severe, comminuted fracture with multifocal bone fragments, hematomas and hemorrhage in the surrounding connective and muscle tissues. Severe epidural acute hemorrhages with compression of the spinal cord were corresponding lesions.

Comments:

The mare had a trauma due to traction of the cervical spine eight days prior to referral to the clinic. While being tied up she pulled back because another horse passed under her neck.

Clinical signs included a swollen and painful neck (especially right sided) with noticeable increased pain reactions after passive lifting of the head, ataxia in both hind limbs, inability to move backwards and reduced intake of water and feed. The horse was euthanized due to unfavorable prognosis.

Picture & Authored by:
Stefanie Binder, Department of Veterinary Pathology, Freie Universit├Ąt Berlin, Germany