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 Post subject: Duck with broken wing
PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 7:16 pm 
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Clever Cockerel
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I noticed one of the " utility elizabeths" had a drooping wing late on friday and suspected it may have been broken. I kept her in the hospital wing over the weekend and gave her some metacam, she picked up a bit but wasn't eating much.
Off to the vet this morning and turns out the last bone in the wing, the metacarpus, has 3 breaks, one at the end, one in the middle and one on the joint. It can't be fixed without a lot of mucking about, so she is going back tomorrow to have part of the wing amputated.
I have no idea what happened to her, there was no sign of any puncture wounds or other signs that she had been grabbed by anything. They free range during the day along 2km of creek, so I guess she may of got caught somewhere and broke it getting free.
Here she is with her overnight bandage.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:05 pm 
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Gallant Game
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Oh no, hope she makes a speedy recovery.

So the vet will effectively be pinioning the wing that is broken?

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:07 pm 
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Golden Kingfisher
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Poor girl! I'm sure she'll recover well though. It's great that she made it home...

If it's not too complicated to explain, what would mending it have involved?

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:32 pm 
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Prime Pekin
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A friend of mine ended up with a spiral fracture of the metacarpal... (Human friend) It required surgery to put a plate in and hold the bones in place.

I imagine with little elizabeth duckies, wing being being broken in several places would mean quite a lot of surgery and pinning using some external framework to fix it. I can understand why everyone would think it's best to amputate... a lot less messing around... a lot quicker healing and considering she doesn't need to fly north for the winter, I doubt she will even miss it!!

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 8:35 pm 
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Clever Cockerel
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I think she is going to take it off half way along the next bone, as they don't like to take it off at the joint, she was going to make a phone call to an avian specialist before the op.

Rach... we didn't really go into the option of trying to fix it, it was obvious even to me that amputation was the best course. Basically the break in the middle could have been wired, but the break on the tip and on the joint were the problem. Recovery time would have been longer, not to mention cost :shock:, they are not flyers, so all it's going to do is unbalance her until she gets used to it.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:39 pm 
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Squeaker wrote:
they don't like to take it off at the joint

That is interesting. Did the vet say why? I guess there is a lot 'going on' at a joint, and the whole thing is a cleaner exercise halfway along the bone.

I'm just curious about it :) Always something to learn from these things.

I'm sure she'll recover very quickly. Good on you for ensuring she has access to good treatment.

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:28 pm 
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Clever Cockerel
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She had the op today, some of the stuff on the original post was incorrect the breaks were on the ulna, see the diagram below

Image

The break on the joint with the metacarpus was the main problem.
The surgery went ok, the amputation was actually done at the joint with the humerus. Apparently because they are porous or air bones, if it had been taken off half way along it would have had needed sealing off. A week on antibiotics and she will be back with the flock.
Looks like the vets will be getting plenty of free labour... lucky I can work it off :-)

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 04, 2012 7:37 pm 
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Makes sense about needing to do it at the joint :)

I hope she recovers quickly :)

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PostPosted: Wed Dec 05, 2012 8:40 am 
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Just for interest - in humans they tend to take limbs off above or below a joint and not at the joint. I think the reason is that they can salvage a good lump of muscle and skin over the bone ending to buffer the bone ending from bearing a direct load with all its stress, impact and loads with prothestic limbs in mind.

A joint end would just be too exposed.

Again just for interest.

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PostPosted: Sun Dec 16, 2012 6:01 pm 
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Just an update on the million dollar duck, well not quite but I have put my hourly rate up by $5 and I'm calling it the duck levy :-) She recovered well from the op and the first photo shows the stump, not pretty, looks like something you might find at KFC. The second is her first morning back with the rest of the flock and shows her mastering the one wing flap :duckw

Image

Image

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 10:29 am 
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It seems in a way a bit sad in the last photo but she isn't in pain and she will be much happier.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 2:15 pm 
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Don't be sad for her, that's just the wing flapping they do when they are first let out in the morning. It certainly doesn't impede her having a good time on the creek with her mates, in fact you wouldn't even know it was missing.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 8:40 pm 
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Oh no I know that, I have ducks.
I mean in the last photo it saddens me a bit as you can see her whole wing missing. But it shouldn't impede her lifestyle in anyway...except flying.

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 17, 2012 8:45 pm 
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That's ok too.. my lizzies don't fly :-)

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PostPosted: Tue Dec 18, 2012 11:39 pm 
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Yeah neither is my Appleyard Drake but he still flies over our 4 foot fence to get my shoes -_-

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