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  1. #1
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    Default Time to play "name that mystery lameness/swelling"...pictures added

    For those of you who have not read my other, more recent thread, this is obviously a spin-off of it.

    A week ago, Oliver was playing a pretty intense game of peek-a-boo through the fenceline with a resident mare (stout colored cob). He obviously came off the worse of it, with several long, shallow scrapes down the outside of his left cannon, and nick on the front of the cannon, fairly high up, along with other bite marks on his hips, etc (why do they stand still for this? When someone has his/her teeth in my a$$, I wouldn't just stand there!) Anyway, it didn't seem to bother him at all, not in the slightest, and we even did a jumper show later that evening.

    Fast forward to Thursday. His legs are fine. Cleaned off his scrapes (which are now mostly healed), and rode him. Friend rode him, too, so I saw him from the ground. Sound as a dollar. I, being the incredibly bright person that I am, decided that this was a good day to try out an alternative scratched treatment (he suffers from chronic scratches - this year, they're pretty mild, but persistant). I had clipped down his back legs - high white socks - and have been putting the Eqyss Microtech spray (now comes in gel - yay!) on him daily but for some reason this year it isn't working as well as I had hoped. So, I sprayed it with Schreiner's herbal solution. Boy, he wasn't happy about that - stomping his back legs, but I figured the sting would go away and let him be.

    Yesterday, at noon - had a lesson scheduled, running late, so did a quick brush over on him and away we went. Coach shows up and we chat as I walk around. Then pick up the trot - oh no, he's off. Intermittently. Coach looks at him and says that his left leg is swollen, right under the hock. If it was swollen when I groomed, it couldn't have been that bad because I did run a brush over his legs, but because i was rushed, I didn't run my hands down them. She asks me to trot him out, and sure enough, after about a lap, he evens out and even canters around fine. One change - he's a bit sluggish to pick up the canter, which is not like him. But we continue on as he seems quite sound, and finish our lesson. Coach looks at him again afterwards and says the swelling has gone down to almost nothing. Whew.

    Get him back to the wash stall and yes, she's right - it's slightly swollen. I hosed it down, turned him out in a small paddock so I could watch him, and cleaned tack. Brought him in (it was really stinkin' hot - about 100 degrees with 95% humidity) and he's swollen up. The swelling is right below the hock, and is diffuse and extends down aout two inches, but isn't bowed out like a curb might be - it is just enough to eliminate the clean lines of his tendons (do you know what I mean?). I didn't have anything to wrap with, so I put him back in his stall, ran to the feed store, got some Sore No More, ran home, got my no bows, and back to the barn (which is 30 min. from my house). In this short period of time, the swelling has become more acute - there's definitely swelling now, warmth, and it's a hard swelling (doesn't pit like edema). I pick up the leg, flex him, and he doesn't mind. I poke, prod, pinch, as hard as I can all over - nope, he doesn't care. He's not lame at the walk. So, I wrapped him with all of the above.

    I'm heading out today in just a few to see if anything has changed overnight, but gaaaahhhh! What could this be? Drags toe at the start, works out of it, a little reluctant to push off into canter but perfectly sound in it, doesn't react to manipulation, and sudden, diffuse swelling.

    Of course, I'm starting to enter full-on panic mode....thinking all sorts of doom and gloom, but hind suspensory is top of my list. Vet will be called Monday if no improvement - suggestions? or sympathy? Both are needed - thanks!
    Last edited by eventer_mi; Jul. 24, 2010 at 06:36 PM. Reason: added pictures for clarification
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  2. #2
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    You have my sympathy mystery lameness sucks!

    Best Luck!



  3. #3
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    Jingles!
    Copyright ©2007-2012, Percheron X
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  4. #4
    eventer_mi is offline Our Lady of Perpetual Novice
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    Default Pics added

    OK - some pics. Cold hosed him today and saw a difference in the swelling pattern, so methinks it may not be a ligament...

    There is a side shot, back shot, and a shot of the "good" leg (the right one) for comparison.

    See the little nick/cut on the front, where the swelling seems to originate? Even though this cut is approx. a week old, could this be the origin? He isn't uncomfortable at all, and even with my husband using all his considerable strength to prode/poke/squeeze, Oliver doesn't react. Help?
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    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  5. #5
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    okay, I'm not a vet and I'm new here so maybe I'm stepping in it here but here is my two cents.

    Schreiner's (sp) is extremely irritating and stings like a mother. I know some people swear by it but I won't touch the stuff. Sore no More is a great linimint but it's quite caustic as well. I noticed your horse's legs are shaved and I'm willing to bet the Schreiner's and Sore No More has irritated and burned his skin to the point where he's having a big reaction to it, hence the swelling.

    I did exactly the same thing to a horse of mine who was recuperating from a check ligament injury and had just had a follow up ultrasound so his leg was shaved. I put Sore No More on it for about a week, all looked fine and then one day I pulled the wrap off and he was blistered and swollen.

    Can you call your vet and tell him what's going on and see what he/she says to do? My vet is great about just giving me advice over the phone if its not life threatening.

    If he were mine I would wash the leg very gently with something mild to get the Schreiner's and Sore No More and everything off of it, pat dry and try some Aloe Vera gel or just leave it "naked" and wrap it up. You can also ice it to help with the swelling and heat but basically the skin is traumatized and will have to heal on its own. Obviously there are medications you can use to help with swelling but I'm not comfortable recommending medications. If it doesn't vastly improve within a day or two I would get the vet out because he'll probably need something to help with the inflammation and reduce the risk of infection. Skin stuff is nothing to mess around with.

    My vet told me to not do anything to my gelding's leg other than wash the stuff off and give him something for inflammation and keeping it wrapped. Eventually all the hair/top layer of skin peeled off. Basically I had given him a good old fashioned racetrack blister without meaning to.

    Good luck,
    LC



  6. #6
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    It might be an allergic reaction, and the swelling might have caused mild discomfort. I wrapped my chestnut TB with Vetrolin once, and he acted silly while I was putting it on, dancing around. I thought he was just being a jerk, until I got home and his legs were puffy and scabby when I took his wraps off--guess who felt like the jerk then? He can't have anything as a liniment but alcohol. I'd keep up with the cold hosing and leave him naked.



  7. #7
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    To me this looks like a small puncture that has gotten inflamed and possibly infected. I would want the vet to see this and see what they think, perhaps antibiotics are in order and will clear this right up



  8. #8
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    I'll agree with the irritant theory....

    It looks like one of your topicals may be irritating his skin and causing an inflammatory response.

    Based on the "look" of the photo... If this were one of my horses, I would wash the leg with some ivory liquid then rinse.... then rinse the leg again with a 50/50 dilution of white vinegar and water, let the vinegar solution stay on for about 30 seconds, and then rinse again..... Lastly I would wash the leg with nolvasan scrub, rinse well, towel dry, and leave the leg alone..... I would try to do the whole washing process quickly so as to avoid any further irritation.

    After washing I'd expect to see a significant reduction of inflammation within 24 hours.

    Sometimes when an irritating substance is put on a horse it will cease being an irritant when it dries. Then when the horse is worked and begins to sweat, the irritant is reactivated and creates an inflammatory response. Wrapping a leg also causes moisture next to the skin, and can activate an irritant.

    Rinsing with a white vinegar solution should remove and neutralize residue from any topicals. The last wash with the nolvasan scrub should help deter any secondary infection from developing.

    That's my non-vet opinion based on photos, but to be sure it's always best to have a vet look at the horse just in case the cause is something else....

    I would also take the horses temperature in case there's any celulitus developing and be concerned if the swelling or lameness gets any worse....
    Last edited by Percheron X; Jul. 24, 2010 at 10:34 PM.
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  9. #9
    eventer_mi is offline Our Lady of Perpetual Novice
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    Wow - thanks! I'm so relieved, as when I initially saw the swelling and the intermittent lameness, the first thing I thought of was "suspensory". Whew. Of course, after cold hosing today, I highly doubt it's a suspensory, and you have all helped me to decide that it's most likely something on his legs causing them to swell.

    Thanks, Fharoah & Percheron X - your jingles may have worked!

    Highflyer - isn't it funny that the minute we assume they're acting like jerks, they usually prove us wrong? I thought he was being silly, too, when I sprayed him, but he obviously thought it hurt!

    LCSequim & Percheron X - he certainly acted like he was irritated when I sprayed him with the Schreiner's! I'm thinking more than ever now that this is what caused the swelling in the first place.

    Carrie - that was my thought, too, and if it doesn't get any better by Monday, I'm certainly calling the vet. He should be able to pay for his vacation by now with what I've paid him!
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  10. #10
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    I just noticed the wound in the upper part of the picture (my computer was cropping the images when I first looked at them earlier).

    It looks like there is some swelling around that wound, and that would seem to indicate the possibility of infection.

    Keep a close eye on that leg as that wound may be the cause of the filling in the lower part of the leg.

    It may end up as a case of celulitus requiring the vet and a coarse of antibiotics.

    Jingles for him to get better quickly.
    Copyright ©2007-2012, Percheron X
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  11. #11
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    I've use Homeopathic LEDUM before for situations such as this with good success.

    Ledum is indicated for swelling that moves UP an extremity.
    For bites, punctures.
    Particularly when LEFT side is affected.

    There are two other remedies that are used frequently in Wildlife Rehabilitation that cover a host of 'infections' when other treatments fail.

    Feel free to email to me if you'd like further info.
    --Gwen <><
    "Treat others as you want to be treated and be the change you want to see in the world."
    http://www.thepenzancehorse.com



  12. #12
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    So homeopathics work differently on different sides of the body? Interesting . . . darned clever molecules, I guess.

    It looks like one of your topicals may be irritating his skin and causing an inflammatory response.
    I think I'd go along with this, only I'd shy away from THREE different things (soap, vinegar, Nolvasan??) to clean the leg if I was worried about chemical irritation! "The solution to pollution is dilution" so I'd just hose him, let the skin dry, and let the tissues rest. Only add lotions and potions if there is obvious infection, and I'm a fan of Alu-Film for lower legs, but only if a wound is looking weepy/icky. Fresh air and sunshine are the "nature's remedies" I choose first.
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  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by deltawave View Post
    So homeopathics work differently on different sides of the body? Interesting . . . darned clever molecules, I guess.

    Whatsa matter? Didn't they teach you that in medical school?



  14. #14
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    I cut those classes. Along with the ones on phrenology, astronomy, and the Tarot.
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  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by deltawave View Post
    I think I'd go along with this, only I'd shy away from THREE different things (soap, vinegar, Nolvasan??) to clean the leg if I was worried about chemical irritation! "The solution to pollution is dilution" so I'd just hose him, let the skin dry, and let the tissues rest. Only add lotions and potions if there is obvious infection, and I'm a fan of Alu-Film for lower legs, but only if a wound is looking weepy/icky. Fresh air and sunshine are the "nature's remedies" I choose first.
    I agree that if this is an irritant issue, that putting more "stuff" on the leg may further irritate the leg, but I've had experiences with irritants causing hives that would not rinse off with plain water, and the vinegar solution is what worked to remove it (the OP said she was cold hosing the leg).

    Hence soap, vinegar, and then Nolvasan.

    Soap removes oils.
    Vinegar hopefully removes any remainder.
    The Nolvasan leaves the leg antiseptically clean until it dries.

    Ivory soap is gentle enough to use as a sheath cleaner.
    People have been known to use a weak vinegar solution as a diaper rash remedy for babies...
    Nolvasan is often used as a surgical scrub directly on open wounds.

    That my logic anyways... but I do completely agree with your point.
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  16. #16
    eventer_mi is offline Our Lady of Perpetual Novice
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    Quote Originally Posted by deltawave View Post
    I cut those classes. Along with the ones on phrenology, astronomy, and the Tarot.
    <snork>

    Well, I have an update. While I was cold hosing Saturday, my ever-astute hubby started peering at his leg and then used his fingernail to pick something out, and then held it up to me - a splinter from the creosote covered rail he scraped himself with. Voila' - there's your irritant!

    So, as of yesterday, his leg looked much better, and I just washed it gently with the antifungal/antibacterial Eqyss shampoo and turned him out. Thanks so much for your help!
    "Opportunity is missed by most people because it is dressed in overalls and looks like work." - Thomas Edison

    So, the Zen Buddhist says to the hotdog vendor, "Make me one with everything."



  17. #17
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    Oooh, creosote is nasty in a wound. No doubt he feels better. Good on your hubby!
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  18. #18
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    Keep an eye on it as splinters can cause nasty abcesses, ask me how I know! Glad you found it!



  19. #19
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    Yay!
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