The aim of this study was to investigate the viability of laparoscopic testicular artery ligation as an alternative to the more conventional castration methods in equids. Twelve intact male donkeys varying in age from 5 months to 13 years were used in this study. Two of these donkeys were castrated by means of an open technique. The remaining donkeys underwent testicular artery ligation under laparoscopic guidance. Ligation of the testicular artery was achieved by application of Filshie clips under laparoscopic visualisation. This was performed with the donkeys standing in stocks and sedated with a combination of detomidine hydrochloride and butorphanol tartrate. The ten donkeys which underwent testicular artery ligation were unilaterally castrated using an acceptable open castration technique on two separate occasions. The first testes were removed at a specific time period after testicular artery ligation, while the second testes were all removed on the same day 9 months after the first group of donkeys underwent laparoscopic assisted testicular artery ligation. The remaining two donkeys which acted as controls underwent a standard open bilateral castration procedure both testes being removed on the same day. All the testes removed, excluding one testis lost to the study, were evaluated histologically. Four testes were used as controls. Thirteen testes showed histological signs of ischaemic necrosis, degeneration and/or atrophy. Three testes showed histological tubular degeneration and atrophy as well as the presence of some normal tissue. The remaining three testes were histologically unchanged. One of the testes was accidentally misplaced at post mortem due to human error. Avascular necrosis of the testicular tissue was not successful in all the subjects. This technique shows promise but further research is required.
Dissertation (MMedVet)--University of Pretoria, 2008.