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Stem cell therapy for horses?

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  • Stem cell therapy for horses?

    So I was watching a special on TV last night about stem cell regenerative therapy in horses and dogs. At least from what they were showing, it appears to be quite successful for a variety of tendon/ligament issues and even arthritic conditions.

    Just wondering if anyone in this board have actual experience and how effective is it? Just curious...

  • #2
    Used Stem Cell with Great Results!

    I am a success story for stem cell. My young gelding went rip-roaring around turn out and tore the superficial flexor tendon, and quite a large lesion was found. Vet recommended splitting the tendon to relieve pressure and then to inject. My insurance fully covered the procedure so I figured I had nothing to lose. We ended up with our very own case study as we injected the large lesion, but there was a small secondary tear that didn't look like much that we decided to leave alone. The section we injected literally healed twice as fast! We had our own little case study going on in there. Overall a tendon that should have been limited walking for a year, ended up being put back to building up work after 5 months, and at the 1 year point he was in full work and ready to show. That is until he went rip-roaring around the pasture and got another lesion well below the initial injury (which by the way looks fabulous, no banana bow, no swelling, looks like a Barbie Doll tendon). Vet immediately suggested re-injecting, but now I have an exclusion on my policy but they are trying to get it covered anyway. I would love to inject it again!


    • Original Poster

      Wow! Thanks. I was pretty intrigued by the show on TV. I don't know anything about it personally, so thought I would ask here. Seems to be a promising field without many side effects. Vey interesting...


      • #4
        I too posted a little while ago asking for success stories as I have a mare that has a stifle problem and it appears that stem cell therapy might be good for her. I have researched on the net, but wanted to hear real life stories of what it entails, if the horse recovered and what type of injury the horse had. It is a lot of money to put out for something that one doesn't know much about.

        I do plan to call Coosa Valley tomorrow which is where I would take the mare, but wanted some real life information before I call. My vet brings his ultrasound out this week and I'll have a better idea of what her problem is. Unfortunately he doesn't do stem cell therapy, so I will have to haul her out. Do the vets put the horse to sleep to do the procedure? I am so unsure about it, even having read about it, that I worry..lol..

        Glad you had success with it, I don't think this mare's problem involves a torn tendon, but there does seem to be something going on as she is a 1-2 lame at the trot, but sound at the walk and appears sound cantering in her paddock (I can't see the hitchiness at the canter that I see in the trot).

        Anyone have a stifle that responded to stem cell therapy?


        • #5
          My horses stem cell treatment was done at the barn. He was never laid down, whole thing was done standing with just a sedative so he wouldn't move. We did the stem cell where they take a chunk of fat from the horse, spin it down, then re-inject. The lab is closer to us, and its easier to harvest fat off a horse then plasma, or the marrow. We took the section from his butt, a couple inches to the left of his tail, there is not even a scar there, and the wound healed in less then a week (no dimple, no infection, just plain simple). After we took the fat section we overnighted it to the lab on a Tuesday and the vet had it back to inject on Thursday morning. We sedated him again, ultrasounded where we wanted it and injected it in 3 different spots. Easy procedure! All I had to pay was my $250 deductable and they covered everything else. My vet said if he saw this result in my horse, he was going to recommend to everybody that could do it. I'm sure that these results aren't found in every case, but I can 100% without a doubt say that it significantly improved the results in my horse.