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He is gone...

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    He is gone...

    My sweet big guy who was a frequent topic of this BB has passed. Lost him to a twist very suddenly on Christmas Eve. I finally feel ok enough to write this. Although I never thought I'd put him into colic surgery, he was in such distress we couldn't do any other diagnostics, and we barely got him to the hospital and on his feet there as it was. There was nothing to be done once they opened him up. It was his time.

    Turns out he had a congenital abnormality at the attachment of the cecum to the abdominal wall that predisposed him to displacement or a twist at the attachment of the colon. It seemed pretty remarkable he never had colicked before from how the surgeon described it, and the resulting twist was the worst possible scenario as far as colic goes. It also might have explained his weird anxiety over pooping and why he tended to have some discomfort there and motility issues even though everything worked well enough (no prior colic). Hard to know for sure.

    The insurance company required some post mortem documentation of the colic, and I asked for a full necropsy. He is at CSU. He has already taught me so much, and if his story can help anyone else, that would be great. So far, his sports vet has seen the pathology of his cervical spine and sacroiliac joints. The facet joint arthritis in the C-spine was a bit more involved than we could see on Xray and ultrasound. His right SI not only showed OA changes that we kind of knew from ultrasound but also chronic instability of the joint. So far, no note of any lower cervical malformation abnormalities.

    Earlier in the morning of the colic, I had gotten an MRI report of his front feet, which had been done standing last week. He had been intermittently off on the left front foot since his suspected cast incident and throughout the mystery random leg swellings I posted about this fall. We had done IRAP in the coffin joint with improvement, then he went off again. The MRI showed chronic changes in both feet to multiple structures, most of them mild at this point. Navicular and DDFT damage being the most significant, although the LF looked a lot better than the RF. My vet was shocked he wasn't lame on the RF (and he wasn't even after blocking LF). I was actually on the phone with that vet to come up with a game plan to handle the foot issues when the barn called me to tell me he was colicking. It was looking fairly likely that he would not come sound, and the vets were considering even doing neurectomy down the road once the soft tissue was addressed. It's likely his feet have been hurting for some time now. So, while I am in shock and disbelief and heartbroken, I am also sort of relieved that he is no longer in pain.

    I hope to get some more details on the necropsy results, and his sports vet is going to take some time to thoroughly go over his front feet and examine them in comparison to the MRI images.

    If there is anything interesting/educational, I'll come back and update.

    So incredibly sorry for your loss. Thank you for your willingness to share the story here and allow others to learn from him at CSU.


      I am so very sorry to hear this news. Huge hugs. He was so lucky to have you!


        I am so very sorry for your loss.


          I'm so sorry. You fought hard for him and did everything you could. It was far more than most people would. I have been there before. I never thought about colic surgery either until the poor boy was in so much pain.


            So sorry to lose him, always so hard.

            At least you are getting some answers now.
            Thanks for sharing those.



              Oh, NO 😣

              How heartbreaking, I’m so very sorry for your loss. Big {{HUGS}}

              I too followed your long and frustrating journey with this horse; you truly put your heart and soul into doing everything humanly possible to diagnose, treat, and manage him - and left no stone unturned to try to get to the bottom of his pain and resistance and help him be and feel better.

              It was heroic. ❤️

              My deepest sympathy.

              At least he is now (as you say) at peace, and out of pain. Having answers is going to help you through the grieving process, and reassure you that you could have done nothing more than you did.

              Godspeed, dear boy...
              "Hope is a good thing, maybe the best of things, and no good thing ever dies."

              "It's supposed to be hard...the hard is what makes it great!" (Jimmy Dugan, "A League of Their Own")


                ((hugs)) for you ~

                RIP ~ Brave Gentleman ~ knowing you will always be loved and remembered ~

                I’m so sorry for your loss ~
                Zu Zu Bailey " IT'S A WONDERFUL LIFE ! "


                  Many hugs to you. I am so sorry for your loss.

                  Thank you for sharing your journey with him in such honest detail over the years and especially now.

                  May he and my Skipper horse run free together with pain-free feet and necks.
                  The Evil Chem Prof


                    Very sorry for your loss.

                    May he rest in peace!


                      I'm so sorry.

                      I hope there's some comfort to be found in the fact that his tribulations and your generosity in sharing have had positive impacts on others. I know my own thinking about my horse's veterinary issues has been impacted by things you have shared about him here, and I'm sure the vets at CSU will use anything they learn from him to help other horses.

                      Godspeed, sweet guy, and hugs to you IPEsq .


                        I am so sorry for your loss. You did everything you could for him.


                          I'm very sorry to hear that he's passed, but you certainly gave him the best life (and the best life chances) possible.
                          "The formula 'Two and two make five' is not without its attractions." --Dostoevsky


                            I'm so sorry IPEsq, you always went above and beyond for him.
                            Blogging about daily life on the retirement farm:
                            Paradigm Farms on Facebook


                              I'm so sorry. I hope you are right that his necropsy and analysis of his various issues can help others.


                                Oh, so sorry to read this. I agree with everyone else, you are generous to share the education from this tough journey.
                                The big man -- my lost prince

                                The little brother, now my main man


                                  My condolences.

                                  I echo everything already said regarding the education you and your guy provided us.



                                    My sympathies.


                                      So very sorry!
                                      "You can't fix stupid"- Ron White


                                        I'm very sorry for your loss. I understand that feeling of relief knowing that they are now pain free, mixed with a feeling of very deep loss.