Tenovaginoscopic approach to the common digital flexor tendon sheath of adult cattle: Technique, normal findings and preliminary results in four clinical cases

Alberto Bertagnoli, Marta Räber, Nicola Morandi, Carlo M. Mortellaro, Adrian Steiner
The Veterinary Journal
January 2012

The aim of this study was to describe the tenovaginoscopic approach to the bovine common digital flexor tendon sheath (CDFTS). A comparative anatomical, ultrasonographic and endoscopic study was undertaken using 26 healthy cadaver feet from adult dairy cows. Tenovaginoscopy was performed using a rigid, 30° arthroscope (length 18 cm; outer diameter 4 mm) enabling a direct view of the synovial cavity and the following structures: digital flexor tendons, digital annular ligaments, lateral and medial pouches, three mesotendons, the vinculum of the superficial digital flexor tendon, and a slot-shaped opening in the manica flexoria of the hind feet. Additionally, four clinical cases of septic tenosynovitis treated with lavage under tenovaginoscopic control were examined. Tenovaginoscopy represents a feasible, minimally invasive method for the diagnosis and treatment of septic tenosynovitis of the CDFTS, which allows the degree of alterations of the normal structures to be evaluated.