“A healthy horse is a well conditioned horse” Dr. Chris Bell, DVM
SPORTS MEDICINE & REHABILITATION
SPORTS MEDICINE & REHABILITATION
Horses are incredible athletes! Like human athletes, injuries can limit or even eliminate their ability to return to compete. By the nature of their athleticism, they can suffer a range of orthopedic injuries such as tendon, ligament, muscle strains and tears; bone fracture; joint injuries and a variety of other issues causing lameness.
Our team of sports medicine veterinarians and veterinary technician provide your horse with the knowledge and expertise to diagnose, treat and prevent injuries to your equine athlete.
We provide a comprehensive lameness exam considering the history and use of the horse along with skilled knowledge of the anatomy and physiology of the horse’s musculoskeletal and neurological systems. Palpation, flexions, hoof exam, neuromuscular exam, movement exam, nerve and joint blocking to lead us to the source of your horse’s lameness issues. No guessing or wait and see with rest
We offer high quality digital radiographic and ultrasound imaging as well as performance related endoscopy of the airways (upper and lower airways) to help determine the full diagnosis. When needed, referral for MRI, CT and Scintgraphy (bone scans) are provided.
Taking the proper xray and ultrasound views is one part of the solution, the other is the skill and knowledge and experience to interpret those images to ensure that the diagnosis arrived at is the correct one for your horse. Our experienced equine veterinarians can also incorporate MRI, CT and Scintigraphy findings and reports into your horse’s diagnosis ultimately leading to better treatment options and more directed care.
We offer a wide variety of care options including farrier prescriptions/consults, anti-inflammatories, joint care and injections, biological therapies such as PRP, IRAP, alpha macroglobulin and stem cell therapy. Shockwave therapy can be provided for a variety of soft tissue and orthopedic conditions often in combination with a biological therapy to maximize effect.
Our Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation Center has 8 indoor stalls, climate controlled, wash rack for hydrotherapy and wound management and an indoor arena with round pen and low speed treadmill. We offer extended rehab care for horses needing that level of care and to provide structured rehabilitation solutions.
Our structured rehab programs include written programs and reference to science backed exercises to ensure your horse is getting the care they need whether in our facility or in yours at home.
We routinely work with referring veterinarians, farriers, adjunctive therapists such as acupuncturists and massage therapists.
Alcohol Joint Fusion of the Hocks (chemical arthrodesis)
This technique was developed at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine as a means to fuse the hocks of horses with arthritis. By fusing the lower hock joints, the arthritis process is stopped and injection of the joints with corticosteroids is no longer needed.
The process involves blocking the lower hock joints or having previous corticosteroid injections which resulted in soundness. The joints are then carefully checked to ensure there is no communication from the lower hock joints to the large upper hock joints with a special xray dye. Interpretation of these dye-enhanced xrays is very important in the process. Once this is completed and the horse is identified as a good candidate, a small amount of alcohol is injected into lower hock joint. This injection results in fusion of the joint within 4-12 months. The pain relief is near immediate and horses can return to work within 48 hours of the injection.
Dr. Bell participated in this research as part of the research team at the U of S and has presented the outcomes of this research at the international level. Dr. Bell is an expert in the area and is available to answer any questions about the procedure and possible outcomes.
Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT) is a treatment modality used to help improve healing time of many soft tissue injuries including tendon and ligament injuries of the legs during the rehabilitation phase. The addition of shockwave therapy to the treatment options at Elders Equine will help broaden the rehabilitation options for our clients and improve the healing of our patients. Elders Equine uses a Versatron Shockwave device with all the newest technology and industry leading research to support the appropriate use of the system.
Equine Kinesiology Taping
As part of our preventative sport medicine and rehabilitation programs, we employ equine kinesiology taping. Sport medicine taping has been used in the elite human athletes to improve performance and prevent injury and now we have it available to our equine patients. Kinesiology taping is used to improve range of motion at joints, decrease inflammation, help prevent exaggerated over-extension and hyperflexion type injuries in the joints, tendons, ligament and muscles and improve blood flow. We use ROCK TAPE kinesiology tape (http://www.rocktapecanada.com/products/equine/) in our practice. We use equine sports medicine taping techniques which allow us to provide preventative therapy and for use in our rehabilitation programs. We apply the tape over muscle groups, tendons, ligaments and joints to provide support to the structures at risk of injury based on our clinical exam and diagnosis.
Some of the specific areas of use for sports tape would be:
Gluteal muscle groups
Lumbar and back muscle groups
Neck muscle groups
Fetlock and carpal over-extension prevention/augmentation
Improved lymphatic drainage - lymphangitis
If you are interested in discussing the potential for use of equine sports taping in your horse prior to their next event or to help with a healing injury, give us a call and we would be happy to discuss it with you.
Elders Equine prides itself on recommending only quality products to our clients. When it comes to joint supplements, there are numerous possibilities and we will take the guess work out of making the right choices when it comes to your horse
COSEQUIN ASU – oral
MedVet EXCEED 6 Way – oral
Galozyme – oral