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What Do You Pay For Joint Injections

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  • What Do You Pay For Joint Injections

    ...in general, for hocks and ankles? Does your vet charge for the drugs injected in addition to the procedure, or is there one "blanket" charge?

    Two and a half years ago, I had two hocks and one ankle done (including flexions, x-rays of the ankle, sedation, full farm call, and a tube of Surpass) for under $500. Each injection was billed as its own "blanket" charge. This was with a vet from a nationallly-known clinic, if that makes a difference.

    I just got a bill for two hocks and two ankles (including flexions, one block, sedation, 1/5 farm call, and two tubes of bute) for a little under $1k. I was charged for the actual drugs injected in addition to the procedure charge. The four injections with no drugs included were about $350. The drugs (not including sedation or bute) were an additional $400+.

    Obviously I will pay my bill with no complaint, but I'm trying to figure out if this is the new "normal"...if so, then I guess Montana will just have to be retired the next time he needs injections, because there is no way I can afford to do that on a regular basis for a casual/pleasure use horse.

  • #2
    How many joints in the hock did the vet inject?


    • #3
      Hock injections last July cost me $385.00 including 12% sales tax

      that include facility use fee of $25.00
      Sedation was $55.00
      TMT & DIT joint injection on the LH was $135.00
      TMT 7 DIT joint injection on the RH was $135.00

      Depo-Medrol 40 mg/ml was $24.00

      Super Nova

      PS this was for Vancouver Island, B. C.


      • Original Poster

        Originally posted by apcohrs View Post
        How many joints in the hock did the vet inject?

        Two in each hock.


        • #5
          Two coffins and two stifles ran me just under $700.
          Pacific Coast Eventing
          Standing Yeager GF


          • #6
            My horse had a similar set of injections done last fall, for right around $600 total (farm call, exam/flexions, sedation and all medications).

            Just had him done again, new vet, haven't seen the new bill, but I'm worried it will be more. Still, I think it is money saved--proven effective treatment, lasts for up to 6 months for my horse--compared to "feed thru" joint concoctions, it is cheap and works!
            Proud member of the "Don't rush to kill wildlife" clique!


            • #7
              Just had my horse's stifle done (2 injections in one stifle). It was $64 for farm call, $50 for sedation, and $330 for the injection (Depo+HA+Genticyn).

              Total = $444

              Probably depends where you live but based on my bill yours sounds about right. My horse is 19 this year so next time he needs to be done I will also retire him bc I can't afford it either.


              • #8
                When I had my horses hocks injected with HA and cortisone this past Sept. it ran me about 550.00. That included farm call, actual drugs, and sedation. I think for flexions, 1 block and injections of both ankles and hocks 1k sounds pretty good! I paid 800 for a lameness exam/consultation about 2 ago years that just included a few radiographs, blocks, flexions and consultation. That didn't include any injections.

                Of course everything is relative to where you live. In my neck of the woods 500.00 is the average price for just hock injections alone.
                Last edited by LookinSouth; Mar. 5, 2012, 09:37 AM.


                • #9
                  I get a blanket charge. Hocks run me $500, coffins $450. I'm in CA and there are cheaper vets, but the guy whose done my mare is a very well known lameness specialist.


                  • #10
                    I wouldn't be shocked by what the OP paid.

                    I just had my horses two hocks injected, with farm call (specialized lameness vet who lives in the next state) and flexions/observation, etc. for a little over $600.

                    The previous call, which also involved extensive x-rays of the hocks, and more general consultation over the horse's condition, ran north of $1100.
                    "The formula 'Two and two make five' is not without its attractions." --Dostoevsky


                    • #11
                      That's a bit steep, but not far off the mark fom average. Is there cheaper? Sure.

                      I'm guessing it breaks down to something like this:
                      55 x 6 joints injection fee
                      70 x 6 joints steroid/HA/antibiotic
                      50 x 2 views X-rays during hock injections for needle placement
                      50 sedation
                      120 level 1 lameness exam, existing client
                      50 diagnostic block (less if a nerve block, more if a joint block)
                      20 farm call split (total guess)

                      Total: 1,090 + bute paste

                      But your total is a little under 1k so they probably didn't charge you for X-rays during the injections (none of my vets do).

                      Here is what I would expect for the same thing at one of the clinics I use (this one is a major hospital in Oklahoma)

                      35 Office fee
                      38 per joint injection fee
                      62 per joint (hocks, pasterns or ankles, all others are more) drugs
                      40 Sedation, zylazine
                      36 Nerve block or 38+36 for a joint block
                      0 x rays during injections
                      15 bandages per ankle
                      20 IV Bute
                      115 level one lameness existing client (135 new client)

                      they don't do farm calls, but there is the office fee

                      So total: 876

                      Another hostipal down the road has very similar costs except joint injections are a flat fee of around 150 for hocks and ankles. I only used them that one time for injections...

                      Their estimated total for the same thing: 1,176

                      When I go someplace new, I always ask for an estimate before we start. Some areas of the country you don't have many other options and in other areas it can be very competitive (oklahoma) with a range of costs. But it's always nice not to have bill shock after the fact.


                      • Original Poster

                        Flyracing, my breakdown was:

                        $8.50 farm call split
                        ~$48 sedation combined (dorm + turb)
                        $120 lameness exam
                        $30 block
                        ~$40 bute paste (2 tubes)
                        $75 x 2 ankle injections
                        $108 x 2 hock injections
                        ~$7 gentomycin w/injections
                        ~$375 polyglycan vial
                        ~$45 Vetalog

                        The bill didn't seem outrageous to me, but it was significantly higher than I was anticipating. I've never paid more than $350 for hocks (including x-rays, which he didn't have this time) or $500 for hocks + one ankle (including x-rays), so I was expecting to pay around $600ish this time - not $1k. I didn't ask for a quote because (a) he needed the work done, regardless and (b) I have been paying for injections for this horse for eight years and thought I had a good handle on about what the visit should cost. I won't make THAT mistake again!

                        It sounds like some of you are paying prices around what I expected to pay and some are paying closer to what I was charged this time around.


                        • #13
                          Last June, just under $800 for hocks, both upper and lower in each hock.
                          Eastern Ontario. Fabulous skilled vet.


                          • #14
                            It is always good to shop around. A few years ago, a neighbor paid $600 for hock injections from a local vet. The race track vet was charging $150, although that involved trailering in.


                            • #15
                              Is 375 for polyglycan a typo?

                              There are two things that jump out about that.
                              1) polyglycan is not approved for use as an IA injection (or an IV one, but I've never heard of a vet using it IA.) ok, so not an big deal and wouldn't bother me if my vet suggested it.
                              2) a 10ml vial runs 75-90 depending on mark up and you'd not even use that much in hocks and ankles! That charge would be for a 50ml bottle so I sure hope you go to take the other 42+ ml home with you!

                              If the is what they charged you for polyglycan, I would call the office Monday just to double check it's billed correctly. No harm in asking.


                              • #16
                                Generally I have paid $125-150 per ankle for injections and about the same, maybe a little more for hocks. Last year though I went to a racetrack vet for my mare's hocks and stifle injections. He does straight HA and no tranq. It cost me $150 total. And most people who no my mare said he was probably the only one who could have done it so easily without her exploding. The only downside is hauling to him and because of his hours I had to leave work early to do it, but I plan to do it again this year and am thinking of taking the old man to get his hocks done as that is cheaper than oral supplement.


                                • #17
                                  Injections I paid for last summer near Dallas TX where $150 per joint, plus farm call, plus sedation and painkillers. Bill would end up being $400-500 for two joints.


                                  • #18
                                    I paid $450 for an exam, x-rays, sedation, and one hock injection last year.
                                    My ears hear a symphony of two mules, trains, and rain. The best is always yet to come, that's what they explained to me. —Bob Dylan

                                    Fenway Bartholomule ♥ Arrietty G. Teaspoon Brays Of Our Lives


                                    • #19
                                      I paid $160 for a farm call, lameness exam, and 2 injections into one hock. Loved the vet that did it. Sadly it didn't fix my lame horse.


                                      • Original Poster

                                        Originally posted by flyracing View Post
                                        Is 375 for polyglycan a typo?
                                        Nope, not a typo or billing issue. The charge was listed as "polyglycan vial for IA injection" or something like that - not sure because I already sent the copy in with my check. That was what really raised my eyebrows initially...