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Before 1937, the treatment of fractures in large and small animals was confined mainly to casts and splints. Between this period and the mid-1960''s, fixation by Stader and Kirschner-Ehmer splints, bone sutures and the occasional Sherman or Lane bone plate was added to the veterinary armamentarium. Fracture treatment, however, took a tremendous leap forward in 1958 when the Swiss Association for the Study of Internal Fixation (AO ASIF) defined the biomechanical principles for successful internal fixation of fractures and implemented these principles with the creation of an entire system of stainless steel implants and instruments. Research led to the design of new implants which would conform to the anatomical and functional requirements of animals, and to the definition of techniques specific for the various animal species. The original AO ASIF principles have proven to be as successful in large and small animals as in humans. This has been clearly demonstrated by analysis of the documentation of the treatment and follow-up of thousands of animal fractures. In 2005, Synthes launched Synthes Vet, its new division dedicated to animal orthopedics. This division has a dedicated product development team and in-house sales consultants providing technical support to veterinary surgeons. Synthes Vet attends more than a dozen regional and national meetings each year in the U.S.


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