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  1. #1
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    Default Opinions on these X-Rays

    Hello Everyone,

    I have been a lurker on the forums for some time and I have always found great information here! Now I have a question for anyone who can help.

    I just had x-rays taken on my young horse because he has had some very mild soundness issues. The x-rays were taken in order to make a shoeing diagnosis and hopefully alleviate some of the issues we were seeing. I don't want to go into too much detail, because I don't want to reveal the vet who took the x-rays, but you can PM me for more specific info.

    My farrier doesn't like them because they were taken at an angle. The vet is insisting that they are fine. What do you all think of the quality of the x-rays? I agree with my farrier.

    Here are two of the x-rays - all of them look like this in terms of being able to see both sides of the shoe:

    xray1
    xray2

    TIA!



  2. #2
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    Those are sufficient for shoeing. The farrier is complaining because the camera was left on the ground, so is "shooting up at an angle", however unless he needs to know how flat his shoe is/isn't, it doesn't impede the ability to evaluate the foot. I can tell you the radiograph could easily be improved, but that doesn't mean it must be.

    Also, the farrier shouldn't be interpreting the radiographs himself. The vet and farrier should be doing that together and the farrier should be voicing his concerns directly to the vet. It's unprofessional to make you the middleman.

    You also need post-trim radiographs, so they will have the opportunity to make perfect radiographs then.

    just for discussion (not because you asked or need to know it): On this horse, he's not the worst, but can be helped. His toe needs to be backed up at least a 1/3
    Of the distance to the P3. He has little sole to trim, so I suspect he will need a wedge pad to align the the phalanges and take pressure off the DIP (coffin) joint and help prevent damage to the heels and digital cushion. The horse may have some lateral collapse of his pastern, which is unlikely related to his shoes.


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  3. #3
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    It appears that you vet is not educated on proper radiograhic technique for farriery evaluation. If your vet took these images specifically for your farrier, they you should demand your money back or demant that the vet retake them with the correct protocol.

    Please have your vet read this article.

    http://www.equipodiatry.com/Radio.htm


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  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by flyracing View Post
    Those are sufficient for shoeing.
    They are useless for evaluating the mechanical proportions and ratios.

    The farrier is complaining because the camera was left on the ground, so is "shooting up at an angle", however unless he needs to know how flat his shoe is/isn't, it doesn't impede the ability to evaluate the foot. I can tell you the radiograph could easily be improved, but that doesn't mean it must be.
    You must have learned this from a vet that never learned proper technique.

    Also, the farrier shouldn't be interpreting the radiographs himself.
    The farrier is the expert in the mechanics of weight bearing and locomotion. In regards to those interpretations, the farrier should be making them directly from the radiographs.

    The vet and farrier should be doing that together and the farrier should be voicing his concerns directly to the vet. It's unprofessional to make you the middleman.
    I agree. It is even more unprofessional for a vet to charge for improper radiographic technique and then opine that they are sufficient for the farrier's needs. A vet is not qualified to judge what is or is not sufficient for a farrier's needs.

    You also need post-trim radiographs, so they will have the opportunity to make perfect radiographs then.
    Maybe, maybe not.

    just for discussion (not because you asked or need to know it): On this horse, he's not the worst, but can be helped. His toe needs to be backed up at least a 1/3
    Of the distance to the P3. He has little sole to trim, so I suspect he will need a wedge pad to align the the phalanges and take pressure off the DIP (coffin) joint and help prevent damage to the heels and digital cushion. The horse may have some lateral collapse of his pastern, which is unlikely related to his shoes.
    Wow. That's a heck of a diagnosis and prescription based on oblique radiographs and having not ever examined the horse in hand or watched it go!


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  5. #5
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    Thank you both for taking the time to write detailed replies! Tom, I read the article that you linked to, and it is more evident now that the x-rays are not suitable for making a shoeing diagnosis. Thanks for the additional info!



  6. #6
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    Yep. My vet does them exactly like the article says. My vet will also pull the shoes and I work with the vet and farrier so that the vet is here pulls the shoes and the farrier comes 30 min after. That way he runs by and looks at the xrays with my vet and is able to come put the shoes he needs back on. Just went through all this with my boy.
    Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole



  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by flyracing View Post
    Those are sufficient for shoeing.
    Not now, not ever.
    The farrier is complaining because the camera was left on the ground, so is "shooting up at an angle", however unless he needs to know how flat his shoe is/isn't, it doesn't impede the ability to evaluate the foot.
    Of course it impedes the ability to evaluate the foot. The rad is of little to no help to the farrier and the vet should be ashamed of his technique.
    I can tell you the radiograph could easily be improved, but that doesn't mean it must be.
    Only if something goes wrong because the farrier worked based on those rads and you want have an excuse to throw the farrier under the bus....
    Also, the farrier shouldn't be interpreting the radiographs himself.
    I agree, with the caveat that no farrier should be asked to evaluate based on rads of that poor quality. And the farrier is not 'interpreting', s/he is evaluating them for information to help guide his/her trimming/shoeing protocol for that horse.
    The vet and farrier should be doing that together and the farrier should be voicing his concerns directly to the vet. It's unprofessional to make you the middleman.
    LOL! Yeah, I can see it now. Farrier: "Were you drunk when you took those rads 'cause they're as useless as teats on a boar as an aid to me."

    The owner is the middleman in this case. Farrier to owner : Thanks for getting the rads for me. Unfortunately, they are next to useless for the intended purpose.."
    You also need post-trim radiographs, so they will have the opportunity to make perfect radiographs then.
    Really? What's wrong with doing it correctly in the first place?
    just for discussion (not because you asked or need to know it): On this horse, he's not the worst, but can be helped. His toe needs to be backed up at least a 1/3
    Of the distance to the P3.
    Did you perchance note the location of the breakover set in the shoe? I thought not...
    He has little sole to trim, so I suspect he will need a wedge pad to align the the phalanges and take pressure off the DIP (coffin) joint and help prevent damage to the heels and digital cushion.
    Is the DIP not always under pressure when the limb is loaded? To which part of the DIP are you referring ? Why might the heels and digital cushion be damaged?
    You suspect? Perhaps you should keep your suspicions to yourself and not further pollute your [laughable] reply with them...
    The horse may have some lateral collapse of his pastern, which is unlikely related to his shoes.
    Really? How have you come to this supposition
    Last edited by Rick Burten; Apr. 12, 2013 at 01:15 PM.



  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tom Bloomer View Post
    I agree. It is even more unprofessional for a vet to charge for improper radiographic technique and then opine that they are sufficient for the farrier's needs.
    Good luck with that. I've had similar crapastic rads taken over the years and the exact same words expressed by more than one farrier but have yet to find a vet that would re-do them because *I* or my farrier don't like them. Besides, the redos aren't going to be any better than the originals.


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  9. #9
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    Better yet, tell the farrier to go to vet school, maybe then he can figure it out.


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  10. #10
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    I'm not a vet or a farrier, but I have seen radiographs of feet done for shoeing purposes. They do not look at all like what you have posted, and I can see why what you posted would be useless to a farrier.

    I also think you won't ever get your money back. If it were me, I think I would get a new vet to come out and take digital radiographs while the farrier is actually there. I know it is hard to schedule, but that is what I would do.

    If it makes you feel any better, I learned that at least some of my horse's PREPURCHASE x-rays (done by a vet that I have always hated, but who I was "required" to use by an old trainer) are not readable. I learned this, oh, a year or so after I bought him. I had his prepurchase x-rays transferred to the excellent clinic that I now use, and one of the lameness specialists/surgeons there said to me "you know his prepurchase hock x-rays are not readable, right?" I responded, "No, I didn't know that. I have not actually seen the x-rays myself, but I was informed by the vet that took them that his hocks were "pristine." The good vet/surgeon: "Well, they might be pristine, but there is absolutely no way to know that from those terrible x-rays."

    Greaaaat. I have since done good x-rays on both hocks. Guess what? They are not pristine.


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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by rabicon View Post
    Yep. My vet does them exactly like the article says.
    Kudos to your vet.
    My vet will also pull the shoes and I work with the vet and farrier so that the vet is here pulls the shoes and the farrier comes 30 min after. That way he runs by and looks at the xrays with my vet and is able to come put the shoes he needs back on. Just went through all this with my boy.
    I always get a queasy stomach when I hear that vets are pulling shoes. The reason is that most veterinarians don't know how to correctly and without damaging the wall, remove a shoe. Also, kudos to your farrier for the way he works with you and your veterinarian.



  12. #12
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    OK...I think you guys are still one up on me. When I requested my vet take lateral images of my horses front feet (with the directions available in one of the above posts) for help figuring out proper trimming or shoeing for my lame navicular horse, she said she had never heard of doing that and did not believe that radiographs would be of any help to a farrier and outright refuse to take them. I recall one farrier questioning whether she got her degree from a cracker jack box. Sigh.


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  13. #13
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    I hope you now use a different veterinarian.


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  14. #14
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    This is why digital radiography equipment is so great. If at first it doesn't come out, try again until it does. Looks like your vet doesn't do many foot xrays... those are just... bad.

    When I go on calls with my SO, we will take as many images as we need to get a good one. Sometimes its the first one, sometimes the 5th. Cost to the client is the same for each series (founder, navicular, hock, etc.) no matter how many images it takes. When doing foot images my SO follows the protocol described in Tom's link.

    And wow, Scratch N Dent, just wow... A vet that won't (most likely because she isn't skilled enough) do a navicular series for a farrier to refer to? Scary.
    Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction.
    Cowboy saying



  15. #15
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    Rick: my vet really does not like to pull shoes lol. Not his favorite thing but he is really good at it and has never caused any damage. He doesn't move as fast as my farrier at it lol but he takes his time to make sure he doesn't do any damage. My farrier and vet work closely a lot with hoof issues and farrier has full trust in my vet pulling them. But i am very lucky to have such a great team. And I didn't realize that most vets didn't xray this way. Again I think I'm very lucky with that for sure. They are a great team and with a slight rotation in my guys coffin bone in one hoof they worked very hard together on him and now his xrays are normal and the rotation has been corrected and stable. But when he put the blocks under his two fronts for xrays I asked of he could attach them so my boy would be uphill now lol. J/k

    Scratch n dent: omg! I would be finding a new vet quickly. That's crazy. Even if she doesn't agree it's your money either way and if you want it done she should do it. Maybe she doesn't know how. Idk but that's crazy.
    Horses aren't our whole life, but makes our life whole



  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thoroughbred in Color View Post
    This is why digital radiography equipment is so great. If at first it doesn't come out, try again until it does.
    And lets not overlook the clarity one gets with digital....
    When I go on calls with my SO, we will take as many images as we need to get a good one.
    How 'bout when you don't go with him/her?



  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick Burten View Post
    And lets not overlook the clarity one gets with digital....

    How 'bout when you don't go with him/her?
    I'm sure he uses the same technique, whether I'm there or not . Maybe with a little more difficulty though, since I am usually restraining the horse/positioning the plate and all he has to do is aim and shoot .

    On a side note: I've known/worked with a lot of vets and farriers as an owner, with varying degrees of experience/credentials to their names. What I've found is that experienced does not always mean compentent (unfortunately), inexperienced does not always mean incompetent. Overall, my best experiences as a horse owner have been with professionals who are constantly improving their education and are humble enough to admit that they need help finding an answer. I would NEVER use a vet or a farrier who was not willing to consult with the other. I'm lucky to have dealt with some really good professionals in both fields. So much can go wrong with the feet that its not worth it to deal with someone who can't admit they need help finding the answer.
    Last edited by Thoroughbred in Color; Apr. 15, 2013 at 01:15 PM. Reason: spelling
    Never approach a bull from the front, a horse from the rear or a fool from any direction.
    Cowboy saying


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  18. #18
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    Interesting to see the OP's films... I just had a set done two days ago for my mare, mostly for precautionary reasons, not because I suspected any problem. She (the vet) fussed around a bit to make sure the horse was standing square, both feet at same height, etc, etc, and still redid a couple shots until she was happy. Happy vet made for happy owner, lol. All done properly which will also make for happy farrier.

    Personally if I spent $ for set that weren't done correctly, I'd be on the phone complaining.
    We don't get less brave; we get a bigger sense of self-preservation........



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