Thermographic diagnostics in equine back pain.
ABSTRACT Infrared thermographic imaging (ITI) is the most sensitive objective imaging currently available for the detection of back disease in horses. It is, however, only a physiological study primarily of vasomotor tone overlying other superficial tissue factors. Interpretation requires extreme care in imaging protocol and in understanding the significance of altered sympathetic nervous tone and the sympathetic distribution. Most discussions on back pain have centered on nociception and inflammatory events. ITI provides information and localization for more significant than diagnosing areas of hot spots. Chronic back pain usually involves vasoconstriction at the affected sites and from ITI studies in man, we have an opportunity to appreciate chronic pain phenomena that involves non-inflammatory events. These occur commonly in horses, but are still seldom recognized and treated.
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ABSTRACT: Objective-To determine the skin temperature of the metacarpus in horses associated with the use of bandages and tendon boots, compared with the bare limb, at rest and after 20 minutes of lunging. Animals-10 adult horses. Procedures-Skin temperature on the bare metacarpus of both forelimbs was measured at rest and after lunging. Subsequently, a bandage was applied to the left metacarpus and a tendon boot to the right metacarpus and skin temperature was measured at rest and after lunging. Skin temperature was measured with fixed sensors and thermographically. Results-Mean ± SD skin temperatures of the bare metacarpi were 14.1 ± 2.4°C (left) and 14.1 ± 3.4°C (right) at rest, and 14.4 ± 1.8°C (left) and 13.6 ± 2.6°C (right) after exercise. Skin temperatures under the bandage were 15.3 ± 1.6°C at rest and 24.8 ± 3.6°C after exercise. Skin temperatures under the tendon boot were 15.3 ± 2.6°C at rest and 20.6 ± 2.9°C after exercise. Skin temperatures under the bandage and tendon boot were significantly higher after exercise than at rest. Skin temperatures at rest were not significantly different with a bare limb, bandage, or tendon boot. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-Skin temperature of the metacarpus in horses increased significantly during exercise but not at rest when a bandage or tendon boot was used. The authors speculate that both a bandage and a tendon boot accelerate the warmup phase of exercise. Further research should focus on the effects of warmup and maximum exercise on the temperature of other anatomic structures such as tendons.American Journal of Veterinary Research 04/2014; 75(4):375-9. · 1.21 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae (A.pp.) is the causative agent of porcine pleuropneumonia leading to high economic losses in the pig industry. Infrared thermography (IRT) of the thorax might offer a new method to select swine with lung alterations for further diagnostics.In this study 50 german landrace pigs were infected with A.pp. in an established model for respiratory tract disease, while 10 healthy pigs served as control animals. To avoid drift errors during IR measurements absolute skin temperatures and temperature differences between a thoracal and an abdominal region were assessed for its diagnostic validity.ResultsIRT findings during the course of experimental A.pp.-infection were verified by computed tomography (CT) before and on days 4 and 21 after infection. Significant correlations were found between clinical scores, CT score and lung lesion score. Ambient temperature, body temperature and abdominal surface temperature were factors influencing the skin surface temperature of the thorax. On day 4 but not on day 21 after infection the right thoracal temperature was significantly higher and the difference between a thoracal region in the height of the left 10th vertebra and an abdominal region was significantly lower in infected pigs than in control pigs. At a cut off of 28°C of right thoracal temperature the specificity of the method was 100% (CI 95%: 69-100%) and the sensitivity 66% (CI 95%: 51-79%).At a cut off of 2°C temperature difference between thoracal and abdominal region on the left body site the specificity of the method was 100% (CI 95%: 69-100%) and the sensitivity 32% (CI 95%: 19-47%) with all control pigs detected negative.Orientation for lung biopsy by IRT resulted in 100% specificity and sensitivity (CI 95%: 69-100%) of bacteriological examination of tissue samples during the acute stage of infection.ConclusionIRT might be a valuable tool for the detection of inflammatory lung alterations in pigs, especially during the acute stage of infection and if ambient temperatures are constant during individual measurements. External and internal factors interfere with this method, so that its application in the field might be restricted to a selection of pigs for further diagnostic with adequate specificity.BMC Veterinary Research 09/2014; 10(1):199. · 1.74 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Infrared thermography (IRT) was used to assess surface temperature change as an indirect measure of muscle activity and exercise associated changes in blood flow in the working hind limb muscles of horses (n=7) undergoing water treadmill exercise. Three treatments were investigated including the treadmill ran dry (TD), water at the height of the proximal interphalangeal joint (PIP) and water at the height of the carpus (CP). Maximum skin surface temperature was recorded from the region of the semitendinosus muscle during exercise at each water height. There was a significant difference in surface hind limb temperature between exercise on the water treadmill ran dry and with water at the height of the PIP and CP (p<0.0001) with hotter temperatures recorded during the TD treatment. There was a greater increase in surface temperature of the hind limbs from pre exercise to maximum temperature during the PIP and CP treatments when compared to the TD treatment, however, this was not significant (p=0.58). There was no significant difference in surface hind limb temperature found between exercise in water at the height of the PIP and water at the height of the CP. The findings from this study suggest that IRT is able to non-invasively detect muscle activity and associated changes in blood flow whilst horses are exercised on a water treadmill. IRT could potentially be used as an alternative method to assess muscle activity and temperature change in an aquatic environment where existing methods present methodological challenges.Journal of Thermal Biology 10/2014; · 1.54 Impact Factor