X-Ray Results and More

So, to recap where we left off last in the lameness chronicles. The bone scan helped us cross several items on the list, and after another lameness evaluation with blocking we were able to pinpoint the lameness primarily to the hind feet and suspected that negative palmar angles were making him sore.

Not Foster, but an example of a horse with negative palmar angle (back of line is down rather than up) compared to ground

Not Foster, but an example of a horse with negative palmar angle (back of line is down rather than up) compared to ground

This morning I am happy to say that the palmar angle theory was accurate, and the vet literally high-fived me when she saw them. It was really really great to have my farrier there in conjunction, and we can already see a difference in trotting him off in his new hind shoes- rocker shoes with magic cushion and a pad. Also good news, Foster has a lot of sole to work with which makesthe farrier’s job much easier in moving back the break-point and relieving the heels. He’ll be shod probably on a 5 week schedule and after 3 shoeing cycles we’ll x-ray again to make sure we’re still on the right track. Very happy that we have a plan and a solution already in play!

Getting shod

Getting shod

But I did say there was more…
So much more, and Foster was a patient boy throughout

So much more, and Foster was a patient boy throughout

The front right continues to come and go with swelling and the tiniest amount of heat, so we did a quick flexion test on the fetlock, which turned out to be positive.  Remember we’ve only been walking so I couldn’t say if he’s been lame on it recently or not. We went ahead and shot an x-ray on it to check it out. Turns out, Foster has bone chips in two different places in the fetlock, which she thinks is causing the lameness as well as his huge “windpuff” on that leg. Just to be doubly sure, we then blocked the fetlock joint and got an improvement, which helped rule out a suspensory issue versus the bone chips for causing the discomfort.
Creature wants more cookies instead of a bandage where we blocked the joint

Creature wants more cookies instead of a bandage where we blocked the joint

So, all in all, I’m glad we’re pretty certain there’s not a suspensory issue that we’re dealing with. However, it does look like Foster should have surgery if I want him to have a chance at a long career. Considering that he’s 8, it’s the option I’m exploring most right now. Surgery would mean probably a 3 month road back into work but ideally sets us up for success thereafter.
I’m hoping to make a decision this week regarding where we will go and when the surgery will happen. This is not the way I thought the morning would go, but I am grateful to still have some things to be grateful for.


18 thoughts on “X-Ray Results and More

  1. Glad to hear the shoes seem to be helping! Interesting about the bone chips. Have you noticed him being off/swollen on it before the crazy paddock time incident? 3 months is really so quick as a recovery time for surgery! They told me 8 months if I did Estella’s hocks, ugh. My dressage horse had a bone chip removed from her hock! She made a full recovery and was great after that, so I hope you get some great success with Foster if you decide to go that route, too!

  2. *hugs* Answers are better than more questions, even when the answers are tough. You’re the best mom Foster could ever have and you are making the best decisions you can. 3 months after surgery is doable – and you have the blogging community to keep you company. You will get through this and you will still get to kiss his nose<3

  3. Wow, great to know the farrier is already in action for his tootsies. My mare in HS had bone chips removed for a similar issue, and while it was several months coming back into work, she came back firing, and competed for well over a decade after that!

  4. I hope you’ll share detail as you decide on surgery etc. I have never had any experience and wasn’t expecting you to share that news but atleast it sounds like it’s resolvable. I really hope for a speedy recover for him.

  5. Ugh. Bone chips. What does Foster think he is? A racehorse?! Honestly, though. Bone chip removal can be pretty minimally invasive and a good return on investment. Of all things, it’s 1000x better than a suspensory issue!

  6. Excellent news on the hinds to have such a manageable problem. Too bad about the bone spurs and sending you warm thoughts as you decide how to move forward.

  7. oh man… it must feel kind of bittersweet knowing that it’s a fixable set of issues, but that it’ll also be such a set back…. but really you’ve brought him so far along for an 8 year old, definitely worth the investment in his well being for a brighter future. good luck finalizing all the details!

  8. Good to finally know what’s going on! And ruling out a suspensory injury is very good news. Hope he has a successful recovery!

  9. The good news is, bone chip removal is generally a pretty quick and easy deal and yields much success. Kind of a bummer to get that news but good that it’s easily fixable/manageable!

  10. Answers are always good! If nothing else, all this work now should set you guys up to come out full force with hopefully no more problems next season!

  11. Most of this horse talk is over my head, but I get the Palmar Angle thing. Sounds like you’re getting orthotic horse shoes! I’m sure it’s a relief to finally have answers, even if it means more vet bills. (Ask me about my 5 cats and one with a bad pancreas if you want to hear vet bill stories!) Thanks for the quick updates.

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