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Obturator Paralysis in Cattle

By

Paul R. Greenough

, FRCVS, Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan

Last full review/revision Sep 2015 | Content last modified Sep 2015

Passage of a calf through the pelvis exerts pressure on the obturator nerve. The close association of the obturator nerve with the origin of the ischiatic nerve can complicate interpretation of clinical signs.

Clinical Findings:

Because the adductors are innervated by the obturator nerve, an animal adopts a base-wide stance or, in recumbency, a sitting position with both hindlimbs extended forward. There is considerable risk that the adductor muscles will be damaged and that permanent recumbency will result. In addition to the base-wide stance, knuckling of the fetlock may be present. This indicates injury of the ischiatic nerve. Both conditions may contribute to downer cow syndrome (see Bovine Secondary Recumbency Bovine Secondary Recumbency read more ).

Treatment:

If obturator paralysis is recognized early enough, vigorous measures should be adopted to prevent complications involving the adductor muscles. The animal should be immediately transferred to a site where there is good footing (eg, a base of tenacious manure over which clean straw has been spread) to prevent slippage during attempts to rise. The hindlimbs can be tied together with a soft nylon strap fixed below the hocks. The limbs are restrained from “spreading” >3 ft (1 m) apart.

OTHER TOPICS IN THIS CHAPTER

Lameness in Cattle
Overview of Lameness in Cattle
Physical Examination of a Lame Cow
Locomotion Scoring in Cattle
Computerized Recording of Digital Lesions in Cattle
Distal Digital Anesthesia for Diagnostic and Surgical Procedures in Cattle
Radiography in Cattle
Arthrocentesis and Arthroscopy in Cattle
Risk Factors Involved in Herd Lameness of Cattle
Footbaths of Cattle
Functional Claw Trimming of Cattle
Prevalent Lameness Disorders in Intensively Managed Herds of Cattle
Digital Dermatitis in Cattle
Pododermatitis Circumscripta in Cattle
White Line Disease in Cattle
Toe Necrosis Syndrome in Cattle
Sole Hemorrhage in Cattle
Thin Sole in Cattle
Heel Erosion in Cattle
Other Disorders of the Interdigital Space in Cattle
Interdigital Dermatitis in Cattle
Interdigital Phlegmon in Cattle
Interdigital Hyperplasia in Cattle
Disorders of the Horn Capsule and Corium in Cattle
Laminitis in Cattle
Double Sole in Cattle
Foreign Body in Sole of Cattle
Vertical Fissures in Cattle
Horizontal Fissures in Cattle
Corkscrew Claw in Cattle
Slipper Foot in Cattle
Disorders of the Bones and Joints in Cattle
Ankylosing Spondylosis in Cattle
Degenerative Arthropathy in Cattle
Coxofemoral Luxation in Cattle
Patellar Luxation in Cattle
Fetlock Dislocation in Cattle
Hip Dysplasia in Cattle
Fractures in Cattle
Septic Arthritis of the Distal Interphalangeal Joint in Cattle
Serous Tarsitis in Cattle
Neurologic Disorders Associated with Lameness or Gait Abnormalities in Cattle
Suprascapular Paralysis in Cattle
Radial Paralysis in Cattle
Ischiatic Paralysis in Cattle
Obturator Paralysis in Cattle
Femoral Paralysis in Cattle
Peroneal Paralysis in Cattle
Tibial Paralysis in Cattle
Spastic Syndrome in Cattle
Spastic Paresis in Cattle
Soft-tissue Disorders Causing Lameness in Cattle
Carpal Hygroma in Cattle
Rupture of the Gastrocnemius Muscle in Cattle
Rupture of the Peroneus Tertius Muscle in Cattle
Tarsal Cellulitis in Cattle
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Lameness
The lameness examination is an important method to identify musculoskeletal abnormalities. Which of the following abnormalities is NOT observed during a physical and lameness exam? 
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