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icthammol: There is no substitute? Now it's on my jeans. Update post 18 (or so).

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  • icthammol: There is no substitute? Now it's on my jeans. Update post 18 (or so).

    Round 2 on treating the horse with a hoof abscess who needed the diaper.

    In terms of drawing out the abscess, is icthammol the only way to go?

    This one is a little uncivilized and will be a PITA (my A, that is) about soaking in epsom salts. So I'd rather pack his foot and get the job done.

    Can I pack it with a slurry of epsom salts and a tad of betadine and call it good? How does that compare to icthammol? How about poultice?
    Last edited by mvp; Mar. 30, 2013, 01:05 AM. Reason: update
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat

  • #2
    I've used epsom salts and iodine before, reasonably happy with it. I also like magnapaste (epsom salt, menthol goo) for abscesses. My farrier hates ichthammol, prefers magnapaste, says it's too tough to tell the difference between the black gooey ichthammol and any black drainage/discharge.

    For soaking, I like to use an IV bag. No more babysitting a foot in a tub, only to have clumsy horse knock it over. Some horses freak a little at the bag on their foot, but most adjust to it quickly. Less water, less medication (I like CleanTrax) and less mess! I get them free from the local vet clinic; cut the tops off, insert foot, fill with water, and duct tape around the pastern.
    “A clever person solves a problem. A wise person avoids it.”
    ? Albert Einstein

    ~AJ~

    Comment

    • Original Poster

      #3
      Originally posted by EventerAJ View Post
      I've used epsom salts and iodine before, reasonably happy with it. I also like magnapaste (epsom salt, menthol goo) for abscesses. My farrier hates ichthammol, prefers magnapaste, says it's too tough to tell the difference between the black gooey ichthammol and any black drainage/discharge.

      For soaking, I like to use an IV bag. No more babysitting a foot in a tub, only to have clumsy horse knock it over. Some horses freak a little at the bag on their foot, but most adjust to it quickly. Less water, less medication (I like CleanTrax) and less mess! I get them free from the local vet clinic; cut the tops off, insert foot, fill with water, and duct tape around the pastern.
      Very nice with the IV bag! The uncivilized horse will probably hate this too, but I'll treat it as "another training opportunity" because it will make *my* life easier.... which is always the point.

      I have some vet friends, so I'll take your advice today. Thank you!
      The armchair saddler
      Politically Pro-Cat

      Comment


      • #4
        I've always made a mixture of epsom salt and ichthammol and done the baby diaper wrap. I'm a big fan of soaking in epsom salt though. Have a mare that's dealing with a toe crack turned abcess that I've been soaking for 20 minutes every other day and I sure can tell when I miss a day soaking.

        Comment


        • #5
          I've always done ichthammol and epsom salt mix in diaper, but I have heard of sugardine (sugar and bedadine) being used too.

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by reay6790 View Post
            I've always done ichthammol and epsom salt mix in diaper, but I have heard of sugardine (sugar and bedadine) being used too.
            Yabbut that's my question: Epsom salts and icthammol (and poultice?) draw edema to it. Same for betadine/sugar?

            I'm talking about the chemistry/physiology question since the horse feeling better is just an aside to getting the abscess to open.
            The armchair saddler
            Politically Pro-Cat

            Comment


            • #7
              Epsom salt and glycerine is my go-to stuff. Ichthammol is over-rated on hooves, IMO. Probably everything else only helps a little anyway, but softening the hoof wall/sole a little bit is at least conceivably helpful. I've seen just as many abscesses resolve without treatment as I have with the whole production.
              Click here before you buy.

              Comment


              • #8
                To avoid soaking a hoof that you want softened so an abscess can blow try this: bandage the hoof in a diaper with your choice of product- ichthamol, sugar/betadine, epsom salf, etc- then pour water over/into the bandage getting it soaked, completely wet. Wrap the hole thing with duct tape- sole, outer wall and such. Put water on the bandage as often as you can during the day. It does to the hoof what a wet band-aid does when left on your hand for a long time. This is my preferred method for getting an abscess to express.

                Comment


                • #9
                  If you don't want to fool around with soaking or icthammol, just use Animalintex. I just keep some on hand just in case.

                  BTW, those IV bags are wonderful for icing hooves when you have an injury or suspect laminitis. I've only used two at a time...front, then back but it was a non really cooperative horse. It's great for a horse that won't stand for soaking. Really great for a White Lightning or Clean Trax treatment too.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    As DW said, the main goal as I know it is to just soften all of the tissue so the abscess is encouraged to burst. And as SLW mentioned, just applying a wet bandage that will stay put and keep moisture in will do what a wet bandaid will do to your skin.

                    When my horse abscessed, I admit dutifully soaked in hot water and epsom salt for the first week - you just get so desperate to help these poor animals - but I soon learned the dampened bandage was more effective.

                    What worked best for us however, was getting him walking around so the yuck was encouraged to blow. I used hoof testers, located the abscess, made a thick hoof pad out of a folded up old polo, cut a hole where the abscess was (basically made a boil cushion) and taped it securely onto his foot. He immediately was mostly weight bearing and very relieved, hobbled gamely around his paddock and the next day the abscess blew.
                    Being terrible at something is the first step to being truly great at it. Struggle is the evidence of progress.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Also can use heavy duty freezer bags to soak hooves. Or an old inner tube cut up and wrapped around the hoof.
                      "There is no fundamental difference between man and animals in their ability to feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery." - Charles Darwin

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Animalintex 100% for ease of use. I tend to alternate between epsom salt/betadine soaked diaper and an Animalintex pad.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by InstigatorKate View Post
                          Animalintex 100% for ease of use. I tend to alternate between epsom salt/betadine soaked diaper and an Animalintex pad.
                          This!!
                          Some riders change their horse, they change their saddle, they change their teacher; they never change themselves.

                          Remember the horse does all the work, we just sit there and look pretty.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I love Animalintex. Instead of buying the special "hoof shaped" pads, just buy the regular sheets and cut them to fit. You can usually get 2 or 3 poultices for the same price as one hoof-shaped poultice!
                            Don't fall for a girl who fell for a horse just to be number two in her world... ~EFO

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I haven't personally dealt with an abscess in a long time- knock wood, knock wood, knock wood!- but have had a bunch of "man, I really really hope this turns out to be an abscess" foot issues and for those I have used Magnapaste. I can't speak to its drawing abilities because there wasn't an abscess to draw after all. Hadn't thought about a wet bandage- that is a great idea! I will put that on my list for next time, along with the Thermacare pad (is that Lord Helpus's trick? Am I attributing this correctly?)
                              "I'm not always sarcastic. Sometimes I'm asleep." - Harry Dresden

                              Amy's Stuff - Rustic chic and country linens and decor
                              Support my mom! She's gotta finance her retirement horse somehow.

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                              • #16
                                My vet has me soaking the foot in a saturated solution of warm epsom salts twice a day and then wrapping at night with Magnapaste. She has also had me use Animalintex in the past.

                                I have to say that this horse is a saint; we had an easter egg hunt, moms with bags of what he thought were treats for him, and a small branch that fell down next to him during the afternoon soak and the only time he even threatened to move the foot from the "bucket" was during the "treat alert." I use a Giddyap Girls soaking bag as a kind of floppy bucket as opposed to using it as billed and attaching it to the foot. Unfortunately, we've had a lot of practice over the years.
                                The Evil Chem Prof

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Animalintex is my first choice. I keep it on hand in the sheets and cut what I need. If I am out, I'll go with magnapaste or have used epsom salts and betadine. I hate ichthammol and usually only use that as a last resort or for other abscess type things that can't be wrapped, like the jaw abscess from he!! I had with one horse. Black goo everywhere and it does not come out or off of anything easily.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    I have actually used an Animalintex on an abcessed jaw. Mares halter rubbed a spot and created a goopy mess. I fixed it with some vetwrap, she looked a little silly but it did the trick!

                                    Comment

                                    • Original Poster

                                      #19
                                      Now there's icthammol on my jeans. Will it be there forever? How do I get it out.

                                      Horse update: I get to the barn, hoping to use epsom salts only and save the absentee BO a little bit of money. Not in the cards, as a second horse (this one shod) was fracture-lame.

                                      Sigh. It's abscess season here, folks.
                                      The armchair saddler
                                      Politically Pro-Cat

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by mvp View Post
                                        Now there's icthammol on my jeans. Will it be there forever? How do I get it out.

                                        Horse update: I get to the barn, hoping to use epsom salts only and save the absentee BO a little bit of money. Not in the cards, as a second horse (this one shod) was fracture-lame.

                                        Sigh. It's abscess season here, folks.
                                        Dawn dish detergent is pretty good on greasy things. Squeeze a decent quantity onto the affected area and kind of rub it in. Let it sit a bit before washing.
                                        The Evil Chem Prof

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