Chronic laminitis involves laminar morphologic changes resulting in digital collapse and can vary greatly in its clinical manifestation depending on duration, severity of lameness, and stability of the distal phalanx/hoof wall interface. Accurate assessment of the whole patient is mandatory and consideration must be given to signalment, occupation, and owner expectations, as well as history and etiology, which often predict the broad course of the disease. Diagnosis is made via physical examination with adjunctive serial radiographic evaluation and possibly venography. Eventual functionality of the foot is determined by structural integrity, which is dictated by the degree of morphologic damage of the soft tissue and bone architecture of the foot. Structures involved include the digital vasculature, the laminar/hoof wall interface, and the distal phalanx. Patient outcome is largely determined by the degree of instability between the distal phalanx and hoof wall, and the ultimate prognosis is further influenced by owner expectation.
Veterinary Clinics of North America: Equine Practice – Elsevier
Published: Apr 1, 2010
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