OUTCOMES FOR ESOPHAGEAL SURGERY REVIEWED
The prognosis for horses who undergo esophageal surgery is guarded, depending largely on whether postoperative complications develop, according to a Canadian study.
Researchers at the University of Guelph reviewed the records of 27
horses who underwent various surgical procedures on the esophagus. These included the creation of an opening for the insertion of a feeding tube (esophagostomy), removal of obstructions from the esophagus (esophagotomy), the widening of a muscle in the lower portion of the
Reference: “Clinical indications, complications and long-term outcome of esophageal surgeries in 27 horses,” Canadian Veterinary Journal, December 2016
organ (esophagomyotomy) to encourage the flow of food to the stomach; and the repair of damage caused by trauma (esophagoplasty).
The data showed that 67 percent of the horses survived to be discharged from the hospital, and a year after surgery, 41 percent were alive and free of complications.
The higher the number of postoperative complications a horse had---the median was three per horse---the less likely he was to survive.