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Tibial fracture repair with angle‐stable interlocking nailing in 2 calves

Marturello, Danielle M., Gazzola, Krista M., Déjardin, Loïc M.
Veterinary surgery 2019 v.48 no.4 pp. 597-606
Holstein, beefaloes, biomechanics, calves, case studies, fracture fixation, tibia
OBJECTIVE: To report tibial fracture repairs with I‐Loc angle‐stable interlocking nails (AS‐ILN) in 2 calves. STUDY DESIGN: Clinical case reports. ANIMALS: One 5‐day‐old Holstein calf and one 3‐month‐old beefalo calf. METHODS: In a 50‐kg Holstein calf, a proximal juxtametaphyseal comminuted tibial fracture with tibial tuberosity slab fracture was repaired with an 8–160‐mm I‐Loc nail and 2 cortical lag screws. In an 89‐kg beefalo calf, a long oblique middiaphyseal tibial fracture was repaired with an 8–185‐mm I‐Loc nail and 5 double loop cerclage wires. In each case, an I‐Loc AS‐ILN was selected because unique biomechanical challenges precluded treatment with traditional osteosynthesis methods, such as external coaptation or plate fixation. RESULTS: No complications were diagnosed, and clinical union was documented 4 weeks after surgery in both cases. Axial growth continued in both calves, with no evidence of angular limb deformity at 7‐ and 6‐month follow‐up. CONCLUSION: This is the first report describing the use of the I‐Loc nail in a bovine species. This application led to uncomplicated healing of tibial fractures and continued growth in both young calves described here. CLINICAL SIGNIFICANCE: Interlocking nailing may provide an effective and safe alternative for osteosynthesis of tibial fractures in young calves. Insertion of the AS‐ILN across the center of the proximal tibial physis of a rapidly growing calf does not seem to alter its growth potential.