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  1. #1
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    Feb. 4, 2009
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    Default I just want to cry (fetlock chip). Update 12/20 post #49

    And to tell the truth I have been. This is as much a vent as it is a request for jingles and maybe some advice.

    About four weeks ago I felt my horse was just NQR but no one on the ground could see anything. On 7/3 I got on and he was noticeably lame at the trot. I suspected an abscess and soaked and poulticed for a couple of days with no change.

    So I called out the vet. To make a long story short he blocked 100% sound on the second block. X-rays show some degenerative changes and some slight ring bone. There is also a chip that appears to have recently been dislodged from wherever it had been sitting. He also tested positive for Lyme exposure on a snap test. Slight reaction there.

    So the course for the time being is treat for Lyme with a month of doxy. Start a loading dose of Adequan (as soon as it arrives). Reevaluate after a couple of weeks.

    Vet will consult with farrier about shoeing changes (vet knows my farrier and is happy to work with him).

    My gut feeling is that it's the chip that's causing the major issues. The NQR for a short time followed by acute significant lameness just points to that IMO. I really do understand the value of hitting the Lyme disease and reducing the inflammation before making any other decisions, but my "fix it now" personality wants to stop effing around and go in and get that chip if it's the problem. I'm just terribly worried that we'll never get him to come sound again.

    I guess on the upside he seems completely comfortable walking and standing so he can continue being turned out with his buddy (both are too busy eating to bother running around) and he's not compromising his other legs. I think he'll be quieter and happier if we can continue his regular routine, minus the riding of course. I've got a great BO who will notify me if she sees any changes and I can check daily to monitor him until we decide if he needs to have the chip removed.

    No matter what he's done for the summer. He's such a nice, kind horse and this just sucks. So if any one has some jingles to spare, or some advice (I'm pretty happy with the course the vet has decided on but ideas are welcome) Copie and I would appreciate it.

    Pictures of the chip. It was quite a bit larger than it appeared on x-rays.

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...type=1&theater

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...type=1&theater

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...type=1&theater

    http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fb...type=1&theater

    Update:

    So turned Copie out today for a short period of time, it did not go well. He bucked and carried on so I got him and brought him back in as soon as it was safe for me to do so and he's dead freaking lame. As much as I hate to think it, it might be time to give up. Even with the way he was carrying on he shouldn't be as lame as he is. I'll give him a couple more days of stall rest and see if he makes any improvement but it's not looking good for future soundness. His surgery was 5 weeks ago and he was cleared yesterday to start going out.

    I did ace him, apparently not enough, but I don't know if it would ultimately have made any difference. I'm just so sad.
    Last edited by mswillie; Dec. 20, 2012 at 09:46 PM. Reason: Update



  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct. 27, 2011
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    108

    Default

    Jingles and more jingles. I put a lot of weight on gut feelings from the people that know a horse best.



  3. #3
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    May. 3, 2007
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    Flagstaff, Arizona
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    Jingling for you!
    www.ctannerjensen.com
    http://ctannerjensen.blogspot.com/
    Equine Art capturing the essence of the grace,strength, and beauty of the Sport Horse."



  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb. 25, 2012
    Location
    Montana
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    Default

    Oh wow.I am so sorry!! So frustrating when your horse is NQR!!! I agree, like having a plan with my vet that I agree with, whatever it is (just went through major knee puncture wound/corneal tear with donkey, looong eye issue ending with eye removal with another horse).

    I don't know a lot about it, but I have a horse with OCD that is not symptomatic now (hope he will never be but know it could happen), and was told if he should be, obviously surgery will be indicated, so I can totally appreciate your concern!!

    I hope your boy feels better, and that your vet and you come up with a plan of attack that makes sense.

    No advice but lots of jingles!!!



  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov. 7, 2006
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    Lexington, VA
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    Default

    Jingles from VA for you and your boy
    stained glass groupie
    www.equiglas.com



  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun. 1, 2007
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    2,324

    Default

    I feel your pain... quite literally...


    Flecky was going great....we had moved up to prelim... and he was doing great minus some wierd stopping issues... which turned out to be because of pain. Stupid me for not realizing it sooner. Anyways, turns out he's got mild ringbone, DJD of the knees and pasterns and a chip in the knee.

    My horse went from clocking around prelim XC and putting in some of his best ever dressage work.... to barely trail sound. It's breaking my heart.... I love this horse more than anything... we're a team... I trust him with my life..... and he is unhappy too... He likes work... he likes being the team.

    I got multiple opinions but it sounds like with Fleck because the chip is in the upper knee joint (not the middle which is the important one) and the rest of his joints are trashed too... not worth doing surgery to remove it. And it's hard for me... I'm like you... fix it.. whatever it takes, just fix it! and fix it now!!

    So... we've increased his pentosan and glucosamine, left him out 24/7 (normal for him) and have started IRAP therapy. He's on his second of the third set of injections... and so far.. no real improvement. (Although I haven't ridden him yet after number 2).

    It's breaking my heart because I love him and want to get back out and play with him. I have a yearling who.... well, is a yearling, so I've still got awhile for him. Fleck will be heartbroken if I stop riding him and start riding something else... so I've been taking him on fun trail rides and we've been enjoying that immensely. But I have to admit... I miss showing... I miss jumping... I miss having goals and a purpose....

    I'm despondent and now trying to decide what to do.... And i know I need to be patient.... and retain my optimism....



    So... hang in there!!! Feel free to vent to me. I get it... it sucks. Where is your horses chip? What joint? And perhaps he'll get much better on the lyme treatment. (Actually.. I"m going to go test my horse too.. just in case)!. I do think sometimes it's the chip, but other times... it's not. It could be a compensation issue, the Lymes disease, or a tweak.

    Good luck.. hang in there..... If they will allow you to take him for a nice walk trail ride... do it!! That helped me and my horses hearts....



  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb. 4, 2009
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    NCC DE
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by FLeckenAwesome View Post
    I feel your pain... quite literally...

    So... hang in there!!! Feel free to vent to me. I get it... it sucks. Where is your horses chip? What joint? And perhaps he'll get much better on the lyme treatment. (Actually.. I"m going to go test my horse too.. just in case)!. I do think sometimes it's the chip, but other times... it's not. It could be a compensation issue, the Lymes disease, or a tweak.

    Good luck.. hang in there..... If they will allow you to take him for a nice walk trail ride... do it!! That helped me and my horses hearts....
    I think Copie's chip is in the fetlock. To tell the truth it hit me so hard at the time that my brain sort of blanked out on the exact location. The impression I got from the vet was that it is in a relatively common "not too hard to get to" spot. I do know that he came 100% sound on the second block and that there had been no effect when the vet did the lower one. The x-ray does show evidence that the chip was stable at one time and has moved. No way of knowing for sure if that is what is causing the lameness but I suspect it could be.

    Today I brought my dressage saddle and bridle home. I still have my AP saddle and other bridle at the barn and I only brought them home so that I can get them nice and clean and store for the summer in a climate controlled non-moldy environment but it still felt awful knowing I won't be using them for a while.

    I'm still reeling from the whole thing. I'm with you, figure out what is wrong and fix it. Now please. Thanks for mentioning IRAP. I had never heard of it before now but it looks like it might offer some additional options if needed.

    Many, many jingles for you and Fleck from Copie and me.



  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep. 26, 2011
    Location
    WNC
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    OP don't lose hope yet...
    My LD/CTR horse went suddenly dead lame after never having a bad day in 8 years. Turned out it was an old (mystery) bone chip off his LF fetlock. I live near a great surgical facility and, after their consult, was told he might only ever be pasture sound or maybe light riding sound. Did the surgery to remove as much of chip as possible and it turns out the problem was not the chip itself but that the rough edges of the joint (where it had chipped) were rubbing through the cartilage for who knows how long until it was finally bone touching bone. Had surgery to remove as much of the chip as possible and "smooth up" the area. Then after about 2 weeks we started IRAP treatment on the joint. Stall rest and hand-walking followed by "pen" rest and hand-walking, followed by walk rides, trot sets, etc. Took about 8 months all told before I could do normal rides. It's now about 18 months later, I've been competing again (20 miles rides) as well as frequent regular rides and - knock wood - he's been fine ever since.
    I hope you have the same kind of luck!
    It's just grass and water till it hits the ground.



  9. #9
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    Dec. 5, 2005
    Location
    Northern Virginia
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by GotMyPony View Post
    OP don't lose hope yet...
    My LD/CTR horse went suddenly dead lame after never having a bad day in 8 years. Turned out it was an old (mystery) bone chip off his LF fetlock. I live near a great surgical facility and, after their consult, was told he might only ever be pasture sound or maybe light riding sound. Did the surgery to remove as much of chip as possible and it turns out the problem was not the chip itself but that the rough edges of the joint (where it had chipped) were rubbing through the cartilage for who knows how long until it was finally bone touching bone. Had surgery to remove as much of the chip as possible and "smooth up" the area. Then after about 2 weeks we started IRAP treatment on the joint. Stall rest and hand-walking followed by "pen" rest and hand-walking, followed by walk rides, trot sets, etc. Took about 8 months all told before I could do normal rides. It's now about 18 months later, I've been competing again (20 miles rides) as well as frequent regular rides and - knock wood - he's been fine ever since. I hope you have the same kind of luck!
    This is exactly what happened with my jumper at age 17--he had the surgery to "clean up" one fetlock and remove a chip from the other followed by regular joint injections. He's been fine ever since! Still happily jumps around 1.15m at age 23.
    Quote Originally Posted by EquineImagined View Post
    My subconscious is a wretched insufferable beotch.



  10. #10
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    Nov. 10, 2011
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    886

    Default

    OP - you're not alone!

    Go with your gut NOW is my advice. I rode a mare for a friend and I noticed last August that the mare was NQR in the field. I hadn't ridden her since May and didn't ride her mush after that. It was so subtle, but definitely something. I rode the mare on the grass, she was better than on the sand. No one ever saw it, but I could feel it. Many vet appointments later, many flexions, two sets of 4 blocks and she never blocked out. (I had one vet tell me she was sound TWICE and to increase her work load) and another vet telling me to take her to surgery to get bone chips in the fetlock out.

    Long story short, she just went to the hospital last week and they can't find anything still. She's been there since Wednesday and it's breaking my heart. I feel terrible. I wish I had pushed the owner more to get her looked at back in August.

    Go with your gut. Get your guy taken care of. Just so you have peace of mind. Good luck! Keep us posted.



  11. #11
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    Apr. 5, 2003
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    Jersey Shore
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    Praying for your horse mswillie



  12. #12
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    Apr. 22, 2006
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    Lyme disease seems to be the disease dujor. What about getting a second opinion. It does sound like the chip is the acute problem. About lyme, I understand that lots of horses would have antibodies if they were all tested. Do they all really need to be treated if they aren't showing symptoms?
    "The captive bolt is not a proper tool for slaughter of equids they regain consciousness 30 seconds after being struck fully aware they are being vivisected." Dr Friedlander DVM & frmr Chief USDA Insp



  13. #13
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    Oct. 20, 2009
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    jingles!!!!



  14. #14
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    Feb. 4, 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by ptownevt View Post
    Lyme disease seems to be the disease dujor. What about getting a second opinion. It does sound like the chip is the acute problem. About lyme, I understand that lots of horses would have antibodies if they were all tested. Do they all really need to be treated if they aren't showing symptoms?
    Well actually he is showing symptoms. He's lame and there are signs of arthritis. Certainly not necessarily caused by Lyme but possible. That being said both the vet and I think there is a good chance that it's the chip causing the lameness but he wants to cover all the bases.

    The Adequan arrived today in the mail so that will start probably tomorrow.

    The vet is out of town this week and I'll be going on vacation in a couple of weeks. He'll do another block to confirm that the pain is coming from where the chip is. If it is and there hasn't been some vast improvement in the interim he'll consult with the surgeon and see where that goes. If he does need surgery I want to be back from vacation when it's performed.

    Lyme is endemic here. My SO has chronic Lyme and I know first hand how bad it can be.
    Last edited by mswillie; Jul. 16, 2012 at 07:52 PM. Reason: clarity



  15. #15
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    Sep. 7, 2009
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    Lexington, KY
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    In any case, you want to treat for the Lyme before during and after the surgery, since Lyme causes inflammation. BTDT.
    "We can judge the heart of a man by his treatment of animals." ~Immanuel Kant



  16. #16
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    Default surgery

    Copie is having surgery to remove the chip today (if he doesn't get bumped by an emergency). Asking for jingles for him for an uncomplicated surgery and recovery and also that this addresses at least some of his recent lameness problems.

    Not sure yet exactly what his post-op care will be but I know it will include some stall rest and at least a couple months off. The surgeon will let me know all the details once he's done.

    I managed to work today and keep my mind off of it but now that work is over for the day I feel like I'm going to throw up.



  17. #17
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    Aug. 15, 2008
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    Sending best wishes, MsWillie for an easy surgery and simple recovery with the best possible recovery. I've had a clients horse go through this and I handled his recovery, so if you ever have any questions that aren't big enough to warrant contacting the vet, feel free to PM me.
    "Aye God, Woodrow..."



  18. #18
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    Oct. 11, 2007
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    mswillie, best wishes for an easy surgery and good recovery!

    BTW, on the Lyme thing... my mare had an active infection in January 2010 and was dead lame everywhere, so we started her on doxy. After 4 weeks, she wasn't lame anywhere but the LH, and ultrasound revealed a suspensory problem. It would have been hard to isolate the suspensory problem if we had not treated for Lyme first. She had surgery in March 2010. Did not come back 100% but she is sound enough for my purposes, and still a blast to ride.

    If your vet used the multiplex Lyme test (http://ahdc.vet.cornell.edu/docs/Lym...for_Horses.pdf s/he had a good idea of the nature of the infection and what treatment would work. Horses aren't "just" positive or negative for Lyme anymore
    You have to have experiences to gain experience.

    Proudly owned by Mythic Feronia, 1998 Morgan mare; G-dspeed Trump & Minnie; welcome 2014 Morgan filly MtnTop FlyWithMeJosephine



  19. #19
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    Sep. 26, 2011
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    mswillie - Best wishes for a great outcome. Please update us. I'm one of the earlier posters whose horse had fetlock surgery to remove a bone chip about 18 months ago, followed by IRAP treatment and lots of rest/rehab. My horse is doing great now and I hope Copie soon will be, too. But take whatever time it takes!
    It's just grass and water till it hits the ground.



  20. #20
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    Heard from the surgeon, Copie handled the surgery well and is resting comfortably in the stall, eating hay, and bearing weight on all four legs.

    According to the doctor, the chip was larger than it seemed on the x-ray and was causing some visible inflammation. He said it definitely needed to come out (they saved it for me) and had I not elected to have it taken out it would have gotten progressively worse. He cleaned up some rough edges and said that there was no evidence of kissing bone so that is good news.

    Copie will stay at the clinic a few days for observation. I really appreciate that they are keeping him and not just sending him straight home. That makes me more comfortable since if he does has any complications he'll be already at the hospital.

    He obviously still has the ringbone but I hope that we can manage that now that the chip won't be constant source of irritation.

    So he'll be on stall rest for a while followed by slowly increasing exercise. I'll get the full details when I go to pick him up. There is still some uncertainty about how sound he'll eventually be, but I'm glad this part is over.



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