Thu 24 April 2014

Comparison of subjective scoring systems used to evaluate equine laminitis

I. Viñuela-Fernándeza, E. Jones, M.E. Chase-Topping and J. Price The Veterinary Journal May 2011 188 2 171-177
This study compared three subjective scoring systems used to assess lameness associated with equine laminitis: (1) visual analogue scale, (2) Obel score and (3) clinical grading system (CGS). Two groups of 12 observers, consisting of equine veterinarians and final-year veterinary students, scored lameness severity after watching video footage of 14 horses on two occasions. Generalizability theory was used to investigate the reliability of the three systems and the effects of observer experience. Overall reliability across all times and observers was high. Intra-observer reliability was higher than inter-observer reliability for all scoring systems, with student reliability being consistently lower than veterinarians, especially for Obel and CGS. All three methods were reasonably reliable tools for assessing lameness, but they were more limited in the hands of inexperienced observers.

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