View Full Version : After Care Post OCD Surgery - Esp Hock?

May. 31, 2010, 04:45 AM
It is 1 week post OCD surgery for my coming 3 y/o Oldenburg. He only had a DIRT lesion in the right hock. Had the surgery, everything went perfectly, and he is currently on stall rest. I have to keep the hock wrapped for 16 days and he is confined to a stall for 3 weeks. Then small paddock for another 3-4 weeks. So far, so good and no tranqs!

My question is moreso regarding the after care TO the hock. It is recommended to inject the hock at the 2 week post surgery mark. This is when the stitches are coming out. It is also recommended to start him on Adequan for the loading dose for the 28 days, then once every 2 weeks, then once a month, etc.

When I was speaking to vet about the surgery and aftercare, etc, I was not told about the above extras. I had been in contact with my vet at my large clinic off and on since I purchased the gelding b/c of the OCD and wanting clarification, etc.

I had saved up enough money for the surgery and all meds/xrays needed for it. I am not prepared at the moment or for some months, to do the injections (hock and Adequan) esp since I had my mares hocks done on the same visit to drop off my gelding for his surgery.

I dont want to fudge anything and not do whatever needed to ensure a successful outcome for the surgery. However, I am just not in the position to buy a box (well Id get the multidose vial) of Adequan and get his hock injected (which would entail me hauling 2 hours back to the clinic as there are only 1-2 vets here that inject and I am not comfortable with either of them). So thats added cost as well.

For those who have personal experience with OCD surgeries, esp in the hock, what was recommended for your horse, regarding aftercare, such as injections, joint supplements, etc?

May. 31, 2010, 10:44 AM
I just had my 15.3h, 14 mos. old Oldenburg colt's OCD right hock done on Friday. I am going to pick him up today.

When I spoke to the vet from Texas A&M who did the surgery regarding after care, he said my colt would be on stall rest with progressive hand walking for 6 weeks then very limited small paddock turnout for another 6 weeks. They will remove the stitches and inject the hock at 2 weeks with hyaluronic acid. I specifically asked about Adequan and he said no Adequan would be required, just the HA.

May. 31, 2010, 01:41 PM
I've had two horses undergo OCD surgery -- both were stifles, not hocks. First one we did inject the stifle about the same time you are talking about (when stitches removed), and seems that we did him again right before he went back to work. No Adequan/Legend for him.

Second one, we did the 7-vial Adequan and a Legend somewhere in that first month or two following surgery (he was at a rehab place, so I didn't do it, just paid the bills, so my memory isn't that great!). I don't recall that we injected the stifle as a matter of course, but when he was ready to go to pasture turnout, there was still some effusion on one joint, so we did inject it then.

I guess if I was in your shoes, I'd talk to the vet/surgeon and basically tell them you have to budget and might not be able to do EVERYTHING, so what would they recommend. Given some parameters, they can probably steer you in the best "bang for the buck" direction since they know the horse.

Good luck with him!

May. 31, 2010, 02:49 PM
I would have to agree with Horsepoor. Just tell the vet that you can't do all of it financially, at least not all right now and ask what is most important and what could wait until you can afford it. I can certainly feel your pain on this one.
I had surgery on both my horse's hocks 3 years ago. I think we kept the hocks wrapped (not an easy proposition!) for two weeks, until the stitches came out. She was stall bound for a month, but we had a 12x24 stall and she behaved nicely,except during a couple storms. I did hand walk and graze her daily, BECAUSE she was always good. My vet told me sometimes it is better to never take them out, because that can just make them worse, but she was always good and never did a silly thing. The second month, she was allowed VERY limited turnout, which consisted of a 12x24 paddock that came off her stall, so she could go in and out all day, but she was locked inside at night. It had a 5 foot fence around it, too. About 2 weeks before she was allowed regular turnout, my vet came and injected both hocks. I can't remember if he just did HA or if there was also steroid in there. I know he talked to the surgeon directly to see what he wanted. The surgeon did not recommend Adequan or Legend, but my vet did suggest a joint supplement and she has been on that ever since. I think most of it has to do with your particular surgeon's preference for post treatment, so just being honest with your financial situation is probably the best bet and find out what he thinks is most necessary. I broke my horse about a month after returning her to full turnout (the vet had said I could do it sooner).

May. 31, 2010, 03:58 PM
I asked my vet about your question when I picked my colt up today. He said it is possible that due to the age of your horse (3 years vs. my 14 mos old) that if the OCD had occured earlier (as in the case of my colt) but the surgery was delayed until age 3, the bone chip could have caused more damage to the joint cartilage that was not visable on the x-rays and was only discovered once the surgeon actually looked inside the joint during surgery. In that case the Adequan treatment would be necessary. This may be why the vet did not include it in the estimate for your surgery since the need for Adequan is unlikely if the damage is negligible or very minimal if the surgery is done very soon after the OCD occurs.

Good luck to you!

May. 31, 2010, 07:37 PM
Great replies everyone. Very helpful so thank you.

When I spoke to the vet after the surgery, he said everything went perfectly and there was no damage to the joint. The OCD was found at 2 yrs of age and I had to wait 1 year to save up. There was never any lameness or gait abnormalities so my vet was confident he would have no residual issues with this hock due to the OCD.

And yes, keeping a hock wrapped, esp for 2 weeks, SUCKS. Though I am getting better and quicker at wrapping it every day. Luckily, even at 3 y/o (well on 6/7/10 he will be) he is extremely quiet and well behaved esp for being on strict stall rest. His stall is 10x20 but he doesnt run around or do anything silly. Yesterday was the first day for hand walking. Again, hes perfect. I am so fortunate that he is so easy going as even my 15 y/o mare cannot be confined to a stall for even two days!

I will be shooting my vet an email and see what he says. I just dont want to spend the money on this surgery and not do everything I should to make sure it does its best for him. But if you cant afford it, what are you supposed to do?

Thanks for everyones replies and experiences. If anyone else has any more experiences to add, I would love to hear about them, even if its not a hock lesion. :)

Jun. 1, 2010, 09:48 AM
My case is slightly different from yours, in that my horse's hock OCD was not discovered until he was 13 -- I know, crazy -- the vet at New Bolton said it's really uncommon, but does happen occasionally. Anyway, he had surgery 2 years ago, similar recovery periods to your horse. He had the HA injection, but no Adequan. He's now in his second season of post-surgery endurance competitions and is 100% sound.

Jun. 1, 2010, 02:43 PM
My mare had 2 OCD lesions removed at Texas A&M almost 3 weeks ago but hers are fetlocks, not hocks. We go back Thursday (exactly 3 weeks post op) for HA injections. That was definitely part of the post op care that I was told was necessary. My mare flexed 100% sound on concrete prior to the surgery and also had absolutely NO joint damage from the OCD lesions (thankfully.)

Like the OP, my vet said since there was no lameness and no joint damage, my mare should not have any lingering issues or any future problems due to the OCD lesions. (That is, no increased chance of arthritis, no increased chance of future joint problems of any kind, etc.)

She is on a loading dose of Adequan but I specifically asked about that. The vet basically said if I wanted to do absolutely everything possible for her, to go ahead and do it. Since my mare was 100% sound before surgery (everything showed up on PPE x-rays - I was the seller) and is in work, I decided to spend the extra money on the Adequan. But, my impression from the vet was that it was *not* necessary. Just an extra precaution that I chose to take.

Jun. 1, 2010, 06:21 PM
inca, thanks for that post. This is the impression I got from my vet regarding the Adequan. I wanted to get my geldings surgery done BEFORE I put him into work esp b/c I was scared to even do basic round pen work with him knowing that the OCD lesion was there. I was scared I was going to cause it to be more of a problem.

My vet is out of town today but I sent an email. Hopefully will hear back shortly.