Equine Abdominal Surgery and the Aftercare – Surgery&Rehabilitation Example

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"Equine Abdominal Surgery and the Aftercare" is a wonderful example of a paper on surgery and rehabilitation. Abdominal surgery has grown to become one of the most important parts of equine care, and one of the commonest is the one for colic in horses. In this case, equine abdominal surgery is used to solve the problem of colic in the intestines. Colic can be caused by abdominal structures like the ovary, blabber, or gastrointestinal obstructions. Abdominal surgery is used to resolve colic when the horse does not respond to other modes of treatment like nasogastric intubation and the use of intravenous fluids. The equine abdominal surgery process itself is relatively simple since the prepping process for the patient involves anesthesia to reduce pain during the surgery process (Greet 1).

The horse is then placed on the back on a surgery table, after which the abdomen is shaved. The prepping process also includes sterilizing the shaved part of the abdomen to ensure clean surgery. After the sterilizing process, a simple incision is made by the surgeon down the horse’ s abdomen to reveal the intestines, where the problem is sought and corrected.

Often, the problem is usually a simple displacement of an intestine, twisting or blockage by a new substance. However, in other instances, the blockage of the intestine could be severe, which requires the surgeon to perform resection and anastomosis. These two types of surgeries involve cutting off a part of the problematic intestine, the part with the blockage, and suturing the resultant ends together. According to Greet (2), equine abdominal surgery is usually effective if conducted in conjunction with a laparoscopy. In this case, the main instrument used is a laparoscope.

As already mentioned, the main component of abdominal surgery is the midline incision that exposes the abdomen of the horse to the surgeon, after which the intestine is observed for blockages or problems. However, for better results, the other instrument that can be used is the laparoscope, which is a tiny camera that is used by surgeons to inspect the inside of the abdominal cavity (Marshal 4). Instead of opening a large cavity in the horse’ s stomach, the surgeon makes a small incision through which the laparoscope can be passed, after which the adjustments to the intestine can be made.

The surgeon can combine the use of the laparoscope with traditional surgical methods when twisting and untwisting the intestine so that the work done is made easier. Generally, after abdominal surgery on a horse, the problem is immediately resolved, and the aftercare required is minimal. The only necessity is enough and careful feeding to avoid rupturing the sutured ends of the intestine, but usually, this is not necessary. The horse is expected to recover fast, with no side effects after the surgery (Greet 4).

However, heavy work like racing is discouraged until the horse is fully healed. The expected outcome is that the horse is cured f the colic problem and can resume regular feeding after the sutures are healed. This means that abdominal surgery is effective in horses, as opposed to traditional methods of treating colic disturbances.


Greet, Tim. Equine Abdominal Surgery, 2011. Vet Watch.

Marshal, Linda. Minimally Invasive Abdominal Surgery: Laparoscopy, 2009. NEEMSC

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