The Verdict Is In: Ulcers Phase 2

Thursday the spotted pony and I made the reluctant trip back to the vet clinic to get re-scoped for ulcers. Emphasis on the word reluctant, since Foster was loathe to get on the trailer for about 5 minutes, and who could blame him? Our last three trips have been to the vet clinic. Horse is not stupid.

sedated horse

After being properly sedated, the tube was fed down his nose and into his stomach, which was then inflated with some air so the vet could look around with the scope. Since we knew where to look this time, the process was much shorter than before, a small blessing to Foster I’m sure.

The bad (albeit expected) news is, the ulcers are still there. The good news is that the ugly grade 4 ulcers are now in a healing grade 1 phase. For the brave of stomach (ha) see the before image here, and the current image here. The yellow bumpiness you see in the second photo is actually the healing ulcers, and when they are gone the stomach lining there should return to its shiny pink color.

Sleepy Foster starts to wake up in the stocks

Sleepy Foster starts to wake up in the stocks

The plan from here is another month of treatment on a lower dosage of Gastrogard- 1/2 tube each day for three weeks, followed by a week at 1/4 tube each day. Then one more re-scope to hopefully confirm that the ulcers are gone for good.

While I hate the constant back and forth stressful traveling to get him scoped, it’s really important to me that I know the ulcers are gone before moving forward with real training. If there are lingering behavioral issues, I would hate to push him through anything if it were actually a pain response. Additionally, if the ulcers are never actually resolved it will only be a matter of time before they get worse again. So, unfortunately the trips to the vet are worth the aggravation and dollars in my mind.

Another month of medication, here we come!

19 thoughts on “The Verdict Is In: Ulcers Phase 2

  1. Well progress is good! I can’t really tell what’s going on in the photos but it looks like a huge difference!
    I have always heard that it’s a waste of money to get them scoped, but it really looks like it is paying off for your (just like I heard it was a waste do to the spinal tap for EPM. Ugh). Is getting them scoped expensive?
    Hopefully this last round of meds will do the trick :)!!

    • Hmm- I wonder why it would be a waste of money? In my mind it’s definitely been worth it – $250 for the scoping is cheap compared to the $1000 I would spend on the next round of gastrogard a couple months from now if in fact we don’t get rid of them this time around.

      • That’s not bad!! I have always heard that you’re better off to just treat it and see how they respond. Ha, they said the same thing about EPM. 6 months later, I will never do that again! Lesson learned.

    • I think it’s a rumor the drug companies started to get you to skip testing and just buy their drugs! hahaha ;)- jk!!! Though on that note… I’ve had 1 horse scoped and 1 horse go through a spinal tap and very glad that I did both! My old guy Johnny had the spinal tap and it confirmed that he did NOT have EPM so we had to look elsewhere for his neurological behavior. I really am a fan of confirmation vs. guessing when it comes to more serious matters like ulcers and EPM!

  2. Sorry to hear that you will have to continue with treatment, but the good news is that things are getting better! I hope Foster feels better in no time and hey, the season is still early!

    • The silver lining is that luckily the gastrogard has been going down pretty well and Foster doesn’t seem to mind it. But I think we will both be glad to get it all over and done with 🙂

  3. bummer that he’s not fully healed yet – but sounds like you’re on the right path! it’s frustrating to take so much time off for recovery, but then again we almost never regret it after the fact!

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