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Weird crusty sore on legs - any ideas?

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  • Weird crusty sore on legs - any ideas?

    My horse has two sores on his hind legs – inside the left hind, outside the right hind, just above pastern level. He has socks on both legs.

    They’re about 1” across, the middle is pink and hairless (may be growing back in) and there’s a circular scab around this.

    I’ve washed it daily for a week with Hibiclens and no change at all. His hind cannon crud does seem to be clearing up as a byproduct of this treatment though!

    Any other suggestions before I have the vet peek? Some kind of keratosis?
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  • #2
    Do you have pictures?

    It sounds like, from your description, Pastern Leukocytoclastic Vasculitis.

    http://www.vetmed.ucdavis.edu/ceh/do...-1-bkm-sec.pdf
    On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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    • #3
      Sounds like scratches/mud fever to me.

      Comment


      • #4
        Ticks? we've had a million of them around here. Was there crusty stuff initially that you had to pick or soak off?

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        • #5
          my mare developed scabs like on all four legs and not just at pastern level but as high as her stifles. vet said they were either insect bites or allergic reaction to some weeds, however, after reviewing what we've done in the preceding days, i'm pretty sure these were caused by chigger bites.

          either way, i was told to wash with warm water and gentle soap or water and iodine solution and then to apply cortizone. i did wash but instead of cortizone i applied veterycin. however, the scabs began healing over even before i had a chance to wash (barn has a power outage so i had to bring hot water from home to wash).
          http://www.eponashoe.com/
          TQ(Trail Queen) \"Learn How to Ride or Move Over!!\" Clique

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          • #6
            Originally posted by jaimebaker View Post
            Sounds like scratches/mud fever to me.
            Problem is that does not really mean anything.

            It would be helpful if the OP posted pictures. Either that, or go through documentation of various forms of pastern dermatitis or "scratches" to try to figure out exactly what she is dealing with.
            On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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            • #7
              Yep, could be any number of things from laying on hard ground with no bedding or grass to allergies to bugs.

              Is this something new? Have you had a lot of wet weather? Or Morning dew? Long grass? What are your stall floors like?

              I have one would tends to get "scruffy" or "stratchy" in spring and fall. I use furacin at the first signs of redness or scrabs and it clears it right up. An occasional dab keeps it from coming back. Don't be afraid of the furacin.
              Groom to trainer: "Where's the glamour? You promised me glamour!"

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              • Original Poster

                #8
                Not a tick bite. We don't have chiggers here either.

                Really dry weather, no grass, no dew that high up the leg. I'm in dusty-dry N California.

                Not stalled - out 24/7 in the same pasture for 2 years.

                Now that I look back on it the sores have been there over a month. I just thought they were a little ding and ignored them, but the past week I've washed with Hibiclens daily and no change. Prior to that I applied neosporin to one and fungal cream to the other as an experiment for a few days but they got really nasty and full of dust/dirt. I felt Hibiclens would do both jobs better, and more cleanly.

                Location of sores is lower hind cannon, one on the inside of one leg, and the outside of the other.

                Here are pics of both: hard to see the dry pink middle and dry ring of yellowy scab around it, but they're about 1" across.

                Outside of right hind

                Inside of left hind.

                Annoyingly his hind boots go over them and I'm sure it's not comfortable. He doesn't kick out or anything but still...
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                • #9
                  Well that's exactly how mine started on my chestnut, white legged horse (I am also in Northern California and it started in hot, dry weather). The good news is you are catching it early on. I followed all the scrubbing/washing/goop recommendations on here and mine spiraled out of control. It starts with something irritating the skin, then the body reacts to that. The scrubbing only irritate the skin more and opens it up to infection.

                  I would keep them dry and out of the sun as much as possible and start with having your vet prescribe some sort of anti-inflammatory. I used Genesis spray with an oral antibiotic/steroid but some vets also try panalog (which is an anti-inflammatory, antibiotic and anti-fungal). I would also switch to wraps on the legs rather than boots that would irritate them. I will say that if they don't start getting better really quickly with use of a topical anti-inflammatory I would go see a dermatologist.

                  How far are you from UC Davis? They have an awesome dermatology department, I love Dr White.
                  On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Thanks PP - would hate for it to get crazy... I'm about 2+ hours from Davis so that's not an easy place to pop into.

                    So antibiotic/steroid...

                    Hibiclens (antiseptic, antimicrobial, bactericidal) plus cortisone cream? Or will OTC cortisone cream just be too weak? I'll buy a tube and add that to the regimen, see if I get results.

                    I'll change to wraps behind for sure. Can't (easily) keep him out of the sun - he lives in a field, though there's lots of shade. If it goes berserk he'll need to go in a stall I guess.
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                    • #11
                      Originally posted by Xanthoria View Post
                      Thanks PP - would hate for it to get crazy... I'm about 2+ hours from Davis so that's not an easy place to pop into.

                      So antibiotic/steroid...

                      Hibiclens (antiseptic, antimicrobial, bactericidal) plus cortisone cream? Or will OTC cortisone cream just be too weak? I'll buy a tube and add that to the regimen, see if I get results.

                      I'll change to wraps behind for sure. Can't (easily) keep him out of the sun - he lives in a field, though there's lots of shade. If it goes berserk he'll need to go in a stall I guess.
                      I would stop cleansing at all. It was the water and irritant that I think caused my horse's problem to get out of control. If you want to do it DIY I would probably try something like neosporin with a cortisone cream and just wipe it off and reapply twice a day. Is there any way he could just be inside during the day? The days are getting quite short now.
                      On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Unfortunately he can't be in during the day at our barn - they only do day turnout for stalled horses, and he's in pasture so he can move around and not get stiff (he's 20)

                        He's also a 32 mile round trip from home/work so 2x a day is almost impossible.

                        Argh. Will consult vet.
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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Xanthoria View Post
                          Unfortunately he can't be in during the day at our barn - they only do day turnout for stalled horses, and he's in pasture so he can move around and not get stiff (he's 20)

                          He's also a 32 mile round trip from home/work so 2x a day is almost impossible.

                          Argh. Will consult vet.
                          It certainly not the only way to treat it, I'm just saying what I would do best case scenario. Consulting a vet would not be a bad idea, but I would caution you to not clip the legs and not wash/scrub them, I am pretty certain that was what did my horse in (he definitely had a photo-sensitivity componant, and once the immune system starts over-reacting to the inflammation it starts spreading and getting worse).

                          The main thing I found was keep it clean, dry and medicated with an anti-inflammatory. If there is a photo-sensitivity component clipping the legs when the horse is outside can make it worse. If there is an infection scrubbing it and/or picking at it can make it worse.
                          On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            OK, noted. I'll get some steroid ceram today and use that for a week, see where I'm at then. Thanks!
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                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              I found some liquid DMSO + Pred in my first aid kit last night - thoughts on using that? Might call the vet to ask what the risks are.
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                              • #16
                                Originally posted by Perfect Pony View Post
                                Problem is that does not really mean anything.

                                It would be helpful if the OP posted pictures. Either that, or go through documentation of various forms of pastern dermatitis or "scratches" to try to figure out exactly what she is dealing with.
                                Yeah and neither does looking at photos. If you want to know what you're dealing with get the vet out to do a skin scraping. I was just giving my very general 'over the internet' answer.

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                                • Original Poster

                                  #17
                                  Well the vet OKd DMSO + pred so I started that tonight after 2 nights of OTC hydrocortisone cream. We shall see!
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                                  • #18
                                    Update?

                                    How did you go with the DMSO?
                                    It's up to you to choose whether you will allow the curve balls thrown at you in life to become stepping stones or stumbling blocks.

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                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      It didn't help. Those sores may or may not have been the beginning of sporotrichosis.

                                      He started showing weeping pustules in December on one leg, and hundreds of them gradually spread all the way up to his sheath. He next had large swellings along the midline, esp at the chest.

                                      He had 4 different types of antibiotics with little success, vet took 2 bloods and 3 pus samples and finally after consultation with Davis diagnosed sporotrichosis. The diagnosis process took three freaking months.

                                      Vet started horse on a weekly IV of sodium iodide, which he's been on for 6 doses.

                                      He's also on daily oral itraconazole (Sporanox) powder which is $400 a month. Starting his second month of that and the pustules appear to be drying up now. I wear gloves to treat him as it's a fungal infection that's communicable to humans (and cats and dogs.)

                                      Horse has been on stall rest since mid December - just in the last week gone to 6 hours a day turnout on a tiny 1/4 acre paddock. I hope to have him back on the hilly 30 aces with the herd in May.

                                      It's been... exhausting.
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                                      • #20
                                        Xanthoria, thanks for the update. If anything this thread should further illustrate that sores on a horse's legs can be very serious. I cringe every time someone posts the "scratches" thread and all the usual suspects come out and recommend all the scrubbing and goops. So many cases of skin problems can be a symptom of a serious condition.

                                        I hope you can get things under control and your horse is healthy again.
                                        On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

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