I have a 2 year old Irish Draught gelding who has a tear in his DDF tendon. Diagnosed with ultra sound - have not had an MRI as yet. My vet tells me that the only remedy is rest. He has been on stall rest since August. Stall during the day and out for a part day in a round pen fashioned to the size of a stall. He was coming along quite well but was bounding around a bit in the round pen and he is head bobbing lame again.
Anyone have any success with this type of injury using anything other than stall rest? I have looked into "Back on Track" leg wraps, laser therapy and oral tendon healers. I don't want to tranq him - he is usually a very good boy but it is a long time for a 2 year old boy.
Where the tear is makes a huge difference in treatment options. If it's way down in the foot, arthroscopic surgery can improve the prognosis significantly. I had a horse with a tear down by the navicular bursa who returned to full competition after the surgery.
Delatwave - thank you for your input - I don't think that the surgery is an option - my vet is one of the best surgeons in our area and other than removing any lesions that may appear he said that surgery was not an option.
Veronica - no other treatment then - no wraps/poultice/meds ?
Not really. He was on Previcoxx for a brief period at first. You can't really wrap or poultice the DDFT-- it's way up inside the foot. He did, when coming back into work, have navicular bursa injections. But first he healed in the injury on nothing but plain old STRICT stall rest. No movement aside what was necessary.
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OP--is your horse injured in the foot or higher up? If it is in the foot, then no amount of wrapping will help. My Calvin shredded his inside the hoof--stall rest, followed by small pen (all the while, handwalking), followed by simply turned out to see if time would heal him. He's sound to lightly hack, but never jumped again.
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I dealt with a SDFT not long ago, from what I remember it was fairly mild. The horse went on stall rest w/ hand walking for 2 months, we re-ultra sounded, did medical paddock turn out + hand walking for 2 months, I started walking under tack 4 or 5 months post bow, with gradual increases in excercise (sp?) and re-ultra sounds every 90 days. He went into full turnout (with drugs) at 8 months, and then full work. I cold hosed and iced after riding.
We didn't do anything but what I wrote above. The same horse later sprained a different tendon- perinious tertious- and we did shock wave for that.
Personally, I would ask my vet about a tranq - long acting or given daily rather than risk further damage by a 2 yr old bounding around. You're right, it is a long recovery - but it's going to be even longer if he injures himself further.
In speaking with my vet re the MRI I asked him if the treatment would be the same after having this and he said yes - stall rest. He said that after doing a thorough ultra sound while he was under while being gelded at the clinic he said that the MRI would pin point the location but again, the treatment would be the same. Thanks for the input - lots to think about.
I think there is a decent amount of visibility in the part of the DDFT that is just at the back of the foot, and ultrasound between the heel bulbs can see pretty well. But nothing that is as precise and beautiful as MRI. Nice thing about ultrasound, of course, is the price and no need for anesthesia.
Yes spoke with my vet this am and of course the ultra sound is not definative - he is worried about lesions that may have grown - very frustrating - I have had friend use Back On Track boots with great success - so may try those and look into the MRI but again if the treatment is the same - REST - do I really need to spend the $2,000.00 - no medical coverage.