Spent a day with Dr. Larry Bramlage in the operating room at Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital recently, and quite a number of the patients were yearlings and foals that could one day end up in a sale.
It was interesting to see what OCDs and bone chips actually look like. The undamaged cartilage of a joint looks like new-fallen snow with a smooth glaze of ice over it. The lining of the joint looks feathery. OCDs, to me, look like bumps in the snow, and so do some chips. Many chips aren't floating around loose, like I thought they would be.
There's a instrument they use in arthroscopic surgery that looks like an ice cream scoop, so when they remove the damaged bone and cartilage it looks like they are scooping out ice cream or snow cream (which was one of my favorite treats as a child).
It's amazing how fast they can put a screw in the bone of a crooked joint - zap, zap, and it's done. And the foals were ready to go home later that day.
The day was grueling. Bramlage does up to 15 surgeries in one day and there were 12 that day. Lots of time on your feet, and little time to grab a drink or a snack. He goes without a break all day long.