There are multiple non-strangulating large colon displacements and obstructions that are possible in the horse. The two most well recognized displacements are right dorsal displacement and left dorsal displacement, which are discussed in related records.
Non-strangulating displacements can partially or completely block the transit of feed within the colon. The severity of the signs depends on many factors, including the degree of blockage and the amount of gas distention. Displacement through sheets of tissue (herniation) can also occur and take many forms.
The cause of displacements is truly unknown but likely begins with dysfunction of the colon which leads to its movement out of place. Sometimes, the type of obstruction can be diagnosed with a careful rectal examination and the use of ultrasound. In most cases, however, the nature of the obstruction can only be determined at exploratory abdominal (colic) surgery.
Displacement can be difficult to differentiate from stubborn impaction or other physical obstruction, without surgical exploration.
Other Diagnoses Considered
Treatments May Include
Prognosis & Relevant Factors
Depends on the specific displacement or obstruction diagnosed. Prognosis is good with early recognition and mechanical resolution of non-strangulating obstructions.
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