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Antibiotics for stubborn hoof abscess?-- done with SMZs, update post #35

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  • Antibiotics for stubborn hoof abscess?-- done with SMZs, update post #35

    It is going on one month now that my appy Sandy has been suffering with the 700 dollar hoof abscess.

    Four vet visits, several radiographs, and a farrier visit support that this is indeed a hoof abscess and not something else. Sandy has excellent hooves and has never abscessed before in his 14 years on this earth.

    I have been employing all the usual methods of abscess treatment, epsom salt soaking and ichthammol packing and animalintex wrapping and cursing, all this time to no avail.

    Sandy was brought some relief when my farrier was able to get a little drainage going through a spot at the sole where it meets the white line near the toe, but indications are that the abscess has migrated too far to get at it safely with a hoof knife.

    One vet in the practice I use would like me to try oral antibiotics (SMZs). The other two vets lean against it. If I start him on antibiotics I have been told I will have to keep him on them for a whole month to ensure that the entire abscess resolves completely.

    Has anyone else gone this route before, SMZs for hoof abscess?

    Anyone else have any brilliant ideas for getting a stubborn abscess to burst?
    Last edited by Barnfairy; May. 7, 2010, 02:42 PM.

  • #2
    My vet told me not to use abx for an abscess because then it won't blow out, or it will take forever to. My horse NEVER abscesses either, and had one for 3 weeks this past winter. We had him in wrapped in a diaper/soaking/poulticing for a week and a half, it finally blew once we turned him out and let him move on it. My farrier saw the track two weeks later and was like WOW, huge abscess.

    Comment


    • #3
      I used antibiotics earlier in the year, orally. It took about a 5 day tub of some sort of oral atibiotic - worked a charm. I was delighted. Poor mare had been 3 legged lame for 2 weeks.

      Comment


      • #4
        I wouldn't use oral antibiotics for a hoof abcess, I would have it perfused.
        "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
        ---
        The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by EqTrainer View Post
          I wouldn't use oral antibiotics for a hoof abcess, I would have it perfused.
          ^This. Time to look into something like Clean Trax.
          Head Geek at The Saddle Geek Blog http://www.thesaddlegeek.com/

          Comment


          • #6
            At the practice I worked for anti-biotics were only prescribed after the abscess had ruptured and if it had been an on-going problem. I believe the working theory was that if it appeared a third time that perhaps the horse's system needed a little help to totally clear it up.

            Comment


            • #7
              Thermacare heat pad instead of soaking. 8 hours of heat without excess moisture...draws that pocket of pus right to the surface where it can burst. Pus loves to move towards heat, a 20 minute soak doesn't work for really stubborn ones.

              Pack hoof with drawing agent (icthymol or epsom paste). Trim a thermacare heat pad to the size of the hoof and stick to washcloth, use washcloth to cover drawing agent. Cover with baby diaper and vet wrap.

              No bute, small turnout so they can move around. Stall rest and bute slow down popping abcesses.

              Remove whole package after 8 hours, clean hoof and allow to air dry for a couple-three or so hours and repeat. Or use it once every 24 hours. Either way I've yet to find an abcess that hasn't burst on the first or second use.
              You jump in the saddle,
              Hold onto the bridle!
              Jump in the line!
              ...Belefonte

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                I've heard of Clean Trax for WLD, but was not aware of its effectiveness for abscesses. I'll look it up. Thanks.

                Originally posted by MistyBlue View Post
                Thermacare heat pad instead of soaking. 8 hours of heat without excess moisture...
                OMG I think I love you. I will try your method right away.

                Comment


                • #9
                  go here http://www.chronicleforums.com/Forum...d.php?t=178116 down to page 7 and read thomas 1 posts plus mine

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    I agree -- usually the antibiotics are for AFTER it's cut out. I just had one that refused to pop no matter what we did. Farrier wouldn't cut as he played a bit but didn't want to do more damage than good even though we had the area pinpointed thru hooftesters.. Got vet out together with farrier -- did x-ray which showed the shadow. Vet cut it out. Was put on SMZ's 12 twice/day (24/day) & kept soaking & treating & wrapping. Horse is fine now. Kept on antibiotics for about 15 days.....

                    On your horse, if it was already cut out & was draining....that's why they probably advised the bactrim to help clean it up.... If it was my horse I would have hauled to the clinic after the first time it popped & the horse didn't get any better. Would have been cheaper in the long run and 99% chance of being 100% right now.....

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Antibiotics will not reach the abscess.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        OMG I think I love you. I will try your method right away.
                        Hope it works for you and your horse fast! I hate soaking...thankfully my own horses aren't abcess prone. But soaking never seems to help and I came up with using the heat pad after trying to soak a lesson horse that kicked me. I was using a heat pad on my own aches and the little light bulb went off...been using it the last 5-6 years or so and it's worked like a charm every time for me.

                        If it doesn't work in 48 hours...I'd call the vet again.
                        You jump in the saddle,
                        Hold onto the bridle!
                        Jump in the line!
                        ...Belefonte

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Androcles View Post
                          Antibiotics will not reach the abscess.
                          Exactly. To get antiobiotics into the bloodstream of the foot in any concentration that would be effective you have to perfuse it - tourniquet the foot and inject antibiotics directly into the veins that give it blood supply.
                          "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                          ---
                          The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Androcles View Post
                            Antibiotics will not reach the abscess.
                            Not true -- might want to call Haygard & let them know that . Every case is an individual... I agree 95% of the time I have never used antibiotics for an abscess but for this last stubborn one he was on them.

                            A friend of mine had a horse that went 3 legged ... spent months piddling around with that hoof -- 100% positive it was an abscess-- little pop here & there. Eventually took to the clinic after vet bills went up over $2,000 & they had to resection 1/2 the hoof since the abscess was so deep & couldn't make it's way out completely by normal means. Yes, this is VERY RARE -- but it has happened before. Horse was put on antibiotics. Total clinic fee was less than the $2k already spent.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by horselover61 View Post
                              Not true -- might want to call Haygard & let them know that . Every case is an individual... I agree 95% of the time I have never used antibiotics for an abscess but for this last stubborn one he was on them.

                              A friend of mine had a horse that went 3 legged ... spent months piddling around with that hoof -- 100% positive it was an abscess-- little pop here & there. Eventually took to the clinic after vet bills went up over $2,000 & they had to resection 1/2 the hoof since the abscess was so deep & couldn't make it's way out completely by normal means. Yes, this is VERY RARE -- but it has happened before. Horse was put on antibiotics. Total clinic fee was less than the $2k already spent.
                              Are you quite sure they were *oral* antiobiotics? I have treated a resection during a perfusion series with IV antiobiotics - catheter and all - but was told by both my vet and the surgeon at NCSU that oral antiobiotics would be absolutely useless and that even IV antiobiotics *without* the perfusion series would be a dicey prospect at best.

                              The OP is talking about oral SMZ's.
                              "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                              ---
                              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                Yes, oral antibiotics are used for tough chronic abscesses by some of the top equine clinics.

                                I have seen oral SMZ's be effective both before and after the abscess was drained.

                                Cleantrax has worked wonders once there is a draining tract.

                                Good luck!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Well I will be making a note of that, as SMZ's are about $80/500 the only time I have had a vet prescribe them for a hoof abcess was when it appeared to be moving up the leg. I am thinking how much easier it would have been to count out 12 pills 2x day than do all that soaking/wrapping/heat packing.. damn... must order more SMZ's tomorrow..
                                  "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
                                  ---
                                  The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Originally posted by Androcles View Post
                                    Antibiotics will not reach the abscess.
                                    This is correct. However, when given as part of a followup treatment to a reoccuring abscess which has finally opened the goal is systemic treatment because the horse is not fighting off the complete infection on it's own. If antibiotics are given before the abscess opens it could cause the infection to subside but not completely go away.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Clean Trax is great. I've also used MistyBlue's method with success. AND, I have used SMZs twice on tough abscesses that would NOT clear up. The first one was the bone scan abscess (did NOT present like an abscess AT ALL and after all other practical diagnostics were used, we bone scanned). The bone scan results made the coffin bone look sketchy and the vets were worried that the infection had gotten into the bone. Horse went on SMZs and was better with in a day or two (and he was on them for a week or 10 days). Second horse just had a tough, lingering one that wouldn't let up. SMZs helped clear it up.
                                      Amanda

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        Originally posted by FatPalomino View Post
                                        Yes, oral antibiotics are used for tough chronic abscesses by some of the top equine clinics.

                                        I have seen oral SMZ's be effective both before and after the abscess was drained.

                                        Cleantrax has worked wonders once there is a draining tract.

                                        Good luck!
                                        I don't know what the antibiotic was but when I had a horse to absess my vet had me to give him an antibiotic twice daily. The absess lasted ten days from start to finish. It was a honey, too.

                                        A friend's old guy got one and she did all the usual stuff and he didn't break it out and didn't break it out until finally the whole leg was swelling. Vet gave her the same antibiotic that he'd given me and in just a couple of days horse's leg was normal again and the absess broke. Might have done it anyway who knows.
                                        You know why cowboys don't like Appaloosas?" - Answer: Because to train a horse, you have to be smarter than it is.

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