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Check ligament injury

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  • Check ligament injury

    Today the vet confirmed that my horse has injured his check ligament. He came in with some swelling around his tendon about two weeks ago. She had looked it then and suggested that we wait two weeks and ultrasound it if it wasn't better.

    Although the swelling has gone down considerably, it still felt thick and the diagnosis was confirmed via ultra sound. It's not a complete tear and his DDFT looks fine. That's all good news but he's still looking at a four month recovery period.

    He should make a complete recovery, but it's such a bummer! Our spring hunt season will start in April and I'll probably still be hand walking him.
    Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
    EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.

  • #2
    My horse had the same injury end of Aug last year and he made a complete recovery! We had the 4 month timeline as well but in researching I had found that using it keeps elasticity and a better outcome in healing. Luckily my horse isnt crazy in his field so he was stall rested for a month and then turnout for a month and then we slowly started him back up, hand walking and working up to 30 minutes, then walking under saddle till we were at 30 minutes, and so on!

    We just competed in the TB show here and he was fantastic showing up to 3ft!!

    So definitely a good outcome for the injury! Good luck with your boy!! and lots of jingles for a speedy recovery!
    Calm & Collected, 13, OTTB
    Forrest Gump (Catasauqua) , 17, OTTB
    Little Bit Indian, 29, TB
    Owner of Spur of the Moment, Custom made spur straps! Find us on Facebook


    • #3
      Sorry about missing the start of spring hunting season. Horses seem to like to time their injuries just so we miss good stuff.

      I have healed a check ligament lesion three times. No long term issues on any of them.


      • Original Poster

        My horse does not tolerate stall rest well so the vet is okay with having him turned out (he weaves and stall walks in his stall). He hasn't taken a lame step so the tricky part is convincing him that he needs to take it easy (Ace is definitely going to play a role in that, especially during hand walking). She has had me hand walking him for the past two weeks and we will continue with it. He's a bit of a kite on a string but he's generally a good boy.

        Horses do know how to time their injuries! Luckily people have already offered me horses to ride and even hunt on occasion. I am feeling very grateful.

        I'm glad to read that most of the check ligament injuries are fully resolved. I definitely know it could be worse.
        Equine Ink - My soapbox for equestrian writings & reviews.
        EquestrianHow2 - Operating instructions for your horse.


        • #5
          My vet had me leave the last two horses in turn out. She said to put the horse wherever it would stay the most quiet.

          I was told that moving around all day helps things heal better.


          • #6
            Belle damaged her check ligament at Morven on Saturday. Some (pitting) edema and heat, between the cannon bone and the tendon. NOT lame on Saturday. (More detail in my post on Eventing)

            Called the vet who said to put an Uptite poultice on it, and that he would come to check it at 10 AM on Sunday (Easter!). Of course he charged the emergency fee, but he came.

            On Sunday morning she WAS lame.

            Ultrasound showed the check ligament was "stretched" but not torn. She is to be poulticed for 5 days, and we are intially looking at 30 days stall rest. So far, she hasn't been frantic, but she does move a fair amout. The vet is coming out again the beginning of next week.

            He said that getting the poultice on less than 24 hourse after the injury will make a big difference in avoiding scar tissue.

            chief feeder and mucker for Music, Spy, Belle and Tiara. Someone else is now feeding and mucking for Chief and Brain (both foxhunting now).