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Mammals (other)
Clinical outcome in two adult horses treated for cleft palate with laryngeal tie-forward surgery
  1. Irene Tosi1,
  2. Sigrid Grulke2,
  3. Alexandra Salciccia2 and
  4. Geoffroy de la Rebière de Pouyade2
  1. 1Department of Physiology and Equine Sports Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Liège, Liege, Belgium
  2. 2Department of Companion Animals and Equids, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Liège, Liège, Belgium
  1. Correspondence to Irene Tosi; irene.tosi{at}


Two adult sport horses were referred for respiratory noise, exercise intolerance, coughing and nasal discharge containing food material. An asymmetrical, mild to moderate defect of the soft palate was diagnosed and surgically treated by laryngeal tie-forward procedure (LTFP). The immediate postoperative endoscopic images were satisfactory; the epiglottis was in normal alignment, dorsal to the soft palate defect in both cases. When contacted respectively four months and three years after surgery, owners of both horses declared being satisfied with the outcome of surgery as initial clinical signs had reduced or disappeared. Follow-up endoscopy showed some retraction of the larynx in both horses but the reduction of the palatal defect was adequate. This report demonstrates that horses can reach adulthood with certain soft palate defects and that severity of clinical signs varies between individuals. The authors suggest considering LTFP as an option in adult horses with small-to-moderate cleft palates causing clinical signs.

  • endoscopy
  • horses
  • respiratory disease
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  • Contributors IT examined the horses, performed the clinical and endoscopic examinations, the diagnosis, the follow up and wrote the paper. SG, AS and GdlRdP performed the surgical procedure and revised the paper. GdlRdP gave the idea to write this case report.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement All available data can be obtained from the corresponding author.

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