The secretions of the equine endometrial glands are essential for the survival, growth, and development of the conceptus in early pregnancy, and endometrial gland density is directly related to successful pregnancy outcome. Endometrial biopsy is routinely used to assess the reproductive potential of broodmares. Some previous studies have shown that equine endometrial glands are uniformly distributed throughout the uterus; however, other work has shown variation of the endometrial architecture between biopsy sites, suggesting that a single biopsy is not representative of the entire endometrium. The aims of this study were to assess and compare the endometrial gland density and thickness at four sampling sites in the uterus (the central segment of each uterine horn, the uterine horn-body junction, and the caudal portion of the uterine body). Endometrial samples from five nulliparous Thoroughbred mares in diestrus were obtained at necropsy and used for subsequent histomorphometric analysis. The caudal uterine body had a significantly lower endometrial gland density and endometrial thickness than the other sites. This may result in nutrient deprivation and reduced survival of embryos or fetuses in this region of the uterus. The endometrial gland density and endometrial thickness did not significantly differ between the other regions sampled, indicating that they are similarly suitable for embryonic implantation and fetal development. Our results suggest that the endometrial structure of the caudal uterine body of the mare is not representative of the endometrial morphology at other sites. Thus, the caudal uterine body is not a suitable site for routine endometrial biopsy.
A 3-year-old thoroughbred colt presented with canker on its left hind foot. Subsequent development of cottage cheese-like horns and dermatitis disturbed healing, despite the use of miscellaneous orthodox treatment approaches to the lesions. Histological examination revealed exudative and suppurative dermatitis, and proliferatively suppurative epidermitis infected with helically coiled treponemes. Total debridement under general anesthesia led to a temporary improvement, but the ground surface regenerated abnormal epidermis similar to that observed initially after surgery. Maggot debridement therapy (MDT) was attempted, which removed all the abnormal tissue. After MDT, general farriery trimming helped to correct the distorted ground surface, and the horse returned to constant training and eventually raced. This case shows that MDT was successfully used for treatment of an intractable and treponemes-infected canker.