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Anybody ever have a horse with this problem? **update

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  • Anybody ever have a horse with this problem? **update

    I have a 9 year old OTTB. He did not have the following problems when I bought him a few years back.

    He's not lame, but he's had this ongoing problem with his hind legs and back. I've had a massage therapist working on him, I used a laser for a week straight, I had a chiropractor out and I had the blacksmith change the angles on his hind feet. He has ongoing back pain, particularly on the left side, and he has trouble when my farrier tries to shoe his hind feet. At one point he wouldn't even lift his left hind. I've had to start giving him banamine so the farrier can do his hind feet. He doesn't seem to mind bringing his hind feet under him, he just doesn't want them lifted out behind him. He even stands with his hind feet under him. When you get his hind foot out and behind him, he literally starts to tremble. When you watch him move, he looks normal. He just doesn't want to stretch his hind legs up and out behind him. I had a Lyme test run and it was negative.

    I'm not sure if I should have a vet look at him, he's not lame, and the chiropractor and massage therapist don't think the vet will be of much help. We don't really have any good local vets so I would have to ship him to Brendon Furlong's clinic or maybe Mid-Atlantic. But I'm not sure what they could really do.

    Has anybody ever had a horse with this kind of problem?
    Last edited by harr754; May. 9, 2006, 03:42 PM. Reason: update

  • #2
    Random thought here, but have you had his spine checked? Degenerating disks can cause problems like this.

    Comment


    • #3
      Originally posted by harr754
      I have a 9 year old OTTB. He did not have the following problems when I bought him a few years back.

      He's not lame, but he's had this ongoing problem with his hind legs and back. I've had a massage therapist working on him, I used a laser for a week straight, I had a chiropractor out and I had the blacksmith change the angles on his hind feet. He has ongoing back pain, particularly on the left side, and he has trouble when my farrier tries to shoe his hind feet. At one point he wouldn't even lift his left hind. I've had to start giving him banamine so the farrier can do his hind feet. He doesn't seem to mind bringing his hind feet under him, he just doesn't want them lifted out behind him. He even stands with his hind feet under him. When you get his hind foot out and behind him, he literally starts to tremble. When you watch him move, he looks normal. He just doesn't want to stretch his hind legs up and out behind him. I had a Lyme test run and it was negative.

      I'm not sure if I should have a vet look at him, he's not lame, and the chiropractor and massage therapist don't think the vet will be of much help. We don't really have any good local vets so I would have to ship him to Brendon Furlong's clinic or maybe Mid-Atlantic. But I'm not sure what they could really do.

      Has anybody ever had a horse with this kind of problem?
      Mid Atlantic has a great neurologist, with very good diagnostic equipment.

      Comment

      • Original Poster

        #4
        atr - who would diagnose a spine problem?

        Comment


        • #5
          Read this article and study the horse:

          http://www.thehorsemechanic.com/hoofcare.html

          When I had this problem with my WB, his hind end would shake rattle and roll when I had a foot up to do his feet. As soon as I recognized the problem and fixed it, that went away instantly.
          ______________________________
          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET

          Comment


          • #6
            I would really be suspecting EPM in this horse, you did not mention if you had a vet look at him for this. He could also have "shivers" which is a condition soemtimes tied to EPSM:

            Study description:
            Shivers is a devastating disorder in draft and warmblood horses whereby horses develop muscle tremors and hyperflexion – flexion beyond normal limits – of the rear limbs during shoeing, after standing still or when backing up. Many affected horses also show concurrent tail tremors. In some horses, shivers never progresses, while in others it leads to weakness, muscle atrophy and an inability to get up that may require euthanasia. The investigators are examining whether shivers is caused by another painful muscle disorder, equine polysaccharide storage myopathy (EPSM), or whether EPSM and shivers are common but separate disorders that can coexist in the same horse.
            www.shawneeacres.net

            Comment


            • #7
              I would really be suspecting EPM in this horse, you did not mention if you had a vet look at him for this. He could also have "shivers" which is a condition soemtimes tied to EPSM:

              Study description:
              Shivers is a devastating disorder in draft and warmblood horses whereby horses develop muscle tremors and hyperflexion – flexion beyond normal limits – of the rear limbs during shoeing, after standing still or when backing up. Many affected horses also show concurrent tail tremors. In some horses, shivers never progresses, while in others it leads to weakness, muscle atrophy and an inability to get up that may require euthanasia. The investigators are examining whether shivers is caused by another painful muscle disorder, equine polysaccharide storage myopathy (EPSM), or whether EPSM and shivers are common but separate disorders that can coexist in the same horse.
              www.shawneeacres.net

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                JB - I saw that article last year, printed it out and showed it to my farrier. The horse was barefoot behind from October through March and he ended up wearing away his heels. He now has degree pads on behind because of his lack of heel.

                The horse has no problems backing which from what I read about shivers, would be a problem. He only trembles when I pull his hind feet out and up. No other trembles, also has a big overstep at the walk. Runs around with no problems in the field, does not look like a horse in pain or discomfort.

                Shawnee acres - EPM or EPSM? Which of those should I obsess about?

                Comment


                • #9
                  I know a shivers horse that is a top equitation horse, so it can back up all day long. So, that is a possiblity.

                  I too would think EPM with this horse. I would have a neurological exam done. I would not be likely to do a spinal tap because it is extremely hard to get a good clean tap. The neuro exam is just a physical exam - they do things like cross the hind legs and see how long they stay crossed, lead them blindfolded, try to pull them off balance walking up and down hill, etc. The best thing to do is diagnose and treat quickly - the quicker you treat it, the better chance you have of full recovery.

                  There are other issues that could be the case - degenerative spinal disease, pinched nerves or nerve damage, soft tissue injury, internal tumors, ESPM, and other neurological problems. You should definitely have this horse looked at. Most things are treatable, but the faster the better!
                  http://community.webshots.com/user/Kikki500

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    EPM and EPSM! EPSM can contribute to shivers which sounds a lot like what this horse is doing. However, EPM can mimic a variety of issue,s as it is neurological and depending on what portion of the spinal cord is affected the symptoms will vary., But hind end weakness and loss of coordination is a sign of EPM.
                    www.shawneeacres.net

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Yes, I'm also thinking could be EPSM. Hindleg handling intolerance can be one of the major symptoms. I'd think he's show more neurological symptoms with EPM. Get him chgecked out or modify his diet and see if you get an improvement.

                      researchers at the OR State University found a 28 % prevalence of EPSM even in TBs. More often TBs tend to suffer from Tying up, AKA exertional rhabdomyolysis or azoturia, which is a slighly different form from EPSM. Also make sure the horse has adequate selenium and vitamin e levels.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Go to Brendan's - he's a good vet, he'll know. Don't mess around with angles and diet, just go to Brendan.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Is he aware of where his feet are? If you moved a hind foot forward, back or crossed w/ the other, will he quickly correct himself? Does he move normally, no stumbling or tripping behind or trouble getting up from laying down? If he doesn't do any of this, I'd think less of it being neurologic, EPM or Wobblers.

                          It wouldn't hurt to start adding fat and taking away sugar/starch from his diet until your vet is able to rule in/out shivers and/or EPSM.
                          A Merrick N Dream Farm
                          Proud Member of "Someone Special to me serves in the Military" Clique

                          Comment

                          • Original Poster

                            #14
                            "Is he aware of where his feet are? If you moved a hind foot forward, back or crossed w/ the other, will he quickly correct himself? Does he move normally, no stumbling or tripping behind or trouble getting up from laying down?"

                            No stumbling or tripping, I watched him roll this morning - jumped up and ran around with no problem. Has no problems turning around in aisle or backing up or moving his legs. I lunged him yesterday and he looked great.

                            I am going to call Furlong's practice today and set up an appointment. I was told by a friend to ask for either Brendon or Meg Mullin.

                            The horse gets ultium and I recently started giving him some TC complete and BOSS. He can't have any oil because he had his flapper lasered off at the track. Not a big hay eater. I hope it's not EPSM, this horse is so picky about what he eats.

                            One more question, if it was neurologic would he respond to banamine? (which he does)
                            Last edited by harr754; Apr. 28, 2006, 08:49 AM.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have seen EPM do all sorts of things - some horses who have responded remarkably well to EPM meds were not overtly neurological. Of course, this could be a whole host of things, which only can be determined by someone who can actually see the horse and this behavior.

                              The banamine could help an EPM horse, not because it relieves the neurological symptoms, but because it relieves the great pain they can experience with it. EPM is a painful disease, so any relief can make a difference. Then of course, it could be that the ban is decreasing the inflamation in the spinal column some, which can help. At any rate, have the horse looked at, and keep us updated!
                              http://community.webshots.com/user/Kikki500

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                I just made an appointment for May 9th with Brendon Furlong. Thanks for all the input. I'll post again after the appointment.

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  EPSM. Go to www.ruralheritage.com, scroll down to "virtual vets are in" and spend the next week reading.
                                  Shivers is NOT a "devastating disease" and it is NOT seen only in Warmbloods and Drafts. I have 1 TB with Shivers and 1 TB with EPSM. Both are extremely manageable conditions, through diet and exercise. Both of mine are in work and happy. (See Chronicle 11/4/05 if you want to read about Mike)
                                  I'll be surprised if Brendan helps. Good luck.
                                  Proud and achy member of the Eventing Grannies clique.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    RiverBendPol - do horses with EPSM typically not want to go forward? My horse has no problem with that - he's very forward and runs around the pasture all the time. What symptoms did your horses have? What kind of diets are they on now? My horse cannot have oil which would make the EPSM diet even more difficult.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      List of signs: http://www.ruralheritage.com/vet_clinic/epsmsigns.htm
                                      Being a picky eater, has he ever been checked for ulcers?

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I'd definitely call a vet, there are LOTS of posibilities beyond muscle (massage) and bone (chiro).
                                        Janet

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

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