A recent study has found that measuring serum amyloid A (SAA) and plasma fibrinogen when a horse is admitted to a hospital for colic surgery and then daily during his stay might help predict the development of post-operative complications.
Drs. De Cozar, Sherlock, Knowles and Mair tested the blood of 300 horses that were undergoing exploratory celiotomy for colic that had been unresponsive to medical management. They tested each horse's blood at admission and for five days following surgery.
Of the 300 horses, 52 percent developed post-op complications and 83.7 percent survived to discharge. The median SAA on days 1 through 5 and median fibrinogen on days 3, 4 and 5 were significantly different between the horses that did and did not develop post-op complications. Additionally, the median SAA on days 1, 4 and 5 were significantly different in horses that did and did not survive.
Higher fibrinogen on admission was associated with post-operation complications like strangulating lesions. Survival rates were associated with lower SAA five days after surgery.
The researchers recommend measuring SAA and fibrinogen upon admission and for five days after surgery.
Read more at EquiManagement.
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