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Management of fractures near the carpal joint of two calves by transarticular fixation with a circular external fixator
  1. H. P. Aithal, MVSc, PhD1,
  2. Amarpal, MVSc, PhD1,
  3. P. Kinjavdekar, MVSc, PhD1,
  4. A. M. Pawde, MVSc, PhD1,
  5. G. R. Singh, MVSc, PhD1,
  6. M. Hoque, MVSc, PhD1,
  7. S. K. Maiti, MVSc, PhD1 and
  8. H. C. Setia, MSc1
  1. 1 Division of Surgery, Indian Veterinary Research Institute, Izatnagar 243 122, Uttar Pradesh, India


A four-ring circular external skeletal fixation device was evaluated for transcarpal fixation of compound fractures in two calves. Case 1 was an eight-month-old female Holstein-Friesian × indigenous breed calf weighing 72 kg, which had a Salter-Harris type II fracture at the distal metaphysis of the right radius/ulna with an open contaminated wound on the medial aspect of the carpus. Case 2 was an 18-month-old crossbred Haryana heifer weighing 105 kg, which had a comminuted fracture at the proximal end of its left metacarpus with severe soft tissue trauma and an open wound on the medial aspect. In both cases, the fractures were repaired with four-ring circular fixators by fixing the proximal two rings in the distal radius/ulna and the distal two rings in the metacarpus. Postoperatively, both calves were treated with analgesic and anti-inflammatory drugs and antibiotic, and the pin-bone interfaces and the open wound were cleaned regularly with povidone-iodine solution. In both animals weight bearing was good to excellent in the immediate postoperative period. The fixator was well maintained and tolerated by the animals until the fractures healed after 45 to 60 days. The movement of the carpal joint was slightly affected when the fixator was removed on day 60, but a follow-up examination after one year showed that both calves had normal functional usage of the limbs.

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