Hock injections. Worth it? - Page 2 - The Horse Forum
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post #11 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 09:10 PM
Green Broke
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On the subject of injections: when would one begin doing this to their horse? Only after stiffness has been a problem, or as a preventitive?
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post #12 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 09:11 PM
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Does he HAVE to be at this particular barn? Is there anything available, maybe a little further to drive, that can offer paddocking? An arthritic horse really needs to be in a paddock 24/7. A 40/60ft yard is no where near enough and the constant turning and spinning to walk up and down the run is going to be doing more harm than good on his hocks.
When we get to this point with our horses, there are big decisions that need to be made and convenience for ourselves gets pushed a long way down the list.
My Dressage horse is stabled with a small run, and paddocked every second day. In the future, as soon as he can't cope soundness wise with this level of work and being stabled/yarded so frequently, I'll be finding somewhere further out with constant paddocking. If I have to give up the excellent facilities and only being 5 minutes from home, so be it, if my horse is happy.
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post #13 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 09:19 PM
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Brighteye---this is not a preventive measure. It may calm some stiffeness early on, but will cause early deterioration of the joint cartilage and muscles. That was my whole point about this becoming a trend. Yes, if you care more about shows than your horses longterm wellbeing, then go for it. It is a quick and effective remedy for pain.
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post #14 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 09:26 PM
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Actually hberrie, recent studies have shown that mild to moderate use of corticosteroids has no effect on joint health, especially when pared with Adequan or another supportive drug.
Corticosteroids, when used sparingly, are not a bad thing. In this horses case I do think they will help, but the horse also needs to be on an effective program with more turnout and Adequan or Pentosan, etc...
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post #15 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 09:47 PM
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I agree Anabel on THIS horses case because he is older, but I definitely would not use corticosteroids on a young horse as a preventative measure! The effects of these type of injections on humans have been tested thoroughly and have been seen to cause sideaffects in longterm use. If that wasn't the case every doctor would be prescribing longterm steroid use to prevent arthritis. Research it!!
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post #16 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 10:22 PM
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Hberrie, please go back and reread Annabel's and my initial posts. We weren't recommending a *regimen* of corticosteroid injections (though for a horse in his 20s that isn't an awful idea, for a young horse, yes, I think it's a bad idea.)

We were saying that an initial joint injection of corticosteriods to interrupt inflammation followed by supportive intramuscular injections of Adequan, Pentosan or similar drug was a reasonable treatment - big difference.

I even cautioned the OP to beware of people whose knee jerk reaction was "hock injections are bad!" and drew a careful distinction between the two types.

Finally, overuse of corticosteriods are widely believed to speed up the disintegration of *cartilage*' not muscle WHEN INJECTED INTRARTICULARLY. That has never been demonstrated in a study or clinical trial, but because of the mechanism of the drug, most practitioners accept it.

Last edited by maura; 01-30-2013 at 10:27 PM.
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post #17 of 21 Old 01-30-2013, 10:34 PM
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For the record, Legend, Adequan, Pentosan and hyluronic acid are NOT corticosteroids and are usually administered IM, though I believe Adequan can also be injected into the joint.
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post #18 of 21 Old 01-31-2013, 12:58 AM Thread Starter
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Maura - Sorry I do not have the luxury of turning him out for retirement. Not everyone can. Because I don't have my own property I have to follow the saying of beggars can't be choosers. Ideally yes I want to keep him in solid and consistent work. I just wanted opinions on hock injections and how well they might work for him. I know little about them, which is why I posted. I have my horses best interest at heart and have taken way better care of this horse than many of his past owners.

Kayty - There is not another barn that can offer anything better than what he has now. Believe me, I have searched. I do turn him out in the round pen when I go out there which gives him more room to run around. But that is all I can do. Keeping him at this barn isn't about convenience, it is about quality of care. It is the only barn around here that I know will feed him his supplements. Other barns say that they do but then just don't do it. Already had that problem in the past. Also I would like to say that he DOES NOT have any soundness issues as long as he isn't being ridden. So left to his own accord, not carrying a rider, he does not exhibit any signs of arthritis. It is only when he is ridden. He moves just fine when not having to carry a rider. He is the only horse on the property that will canter in his run. Is the size of turnout ideal? No, but as I said, beggars cannot be choosers.

hberrie - He is currently on msm and it just isn't enough sadly. Wish it was.

Punkstank - Without injections, he isn't sound to carry a rider at all. Not even at the walk. Even if he was, he doesn't know how to quietly hack lol. Take him out of the arena to a trail, field, etc. and he turns into a racehorse and will spend the whole ride fighting you to run. Young at heart, just not so young physically.

From what I have heard so far it seems the hock injections would be a good idea. That is all I was trying to find out (:

And for anyone thinking that if I can't provide this horse with more ideal turnout that I shouldn't own him, well honestly his last two owners neglected and abused him so I am by far the less of the evils in that case. Turnout is the only downfall he has. Plus NO ONE will buy, or even take for free, a 23 year old Thoroughbred in today's market, not that I would ever sell him anyway.

Last edited by NordicJuniper; 01-31-2013 at 01:07 AM.
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post #19 of 21 Old 01-31-2013, 12:51 PM
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It may be a good idea to try adequan or Pentosan, or even an injectable glucosamine.

The problem with only doing joint injections is that they only treat the joints you inject. If you put him on something systematic, you can treat all his joints. Especially with an older horse, you probably have multiple joints with arthritis. If you just treat his hocks he may still come up sore some where else.

Start with something systematic first, and if that is not enough, you can always inject his hocks later. Or you can do both if you have the money.

You can do X rays, but with an older horse, it isn't always necessary, as you are almost always going to find arthritis anyway. X rays can be misleading as well. A horse can have bad X rays and still be sound, and a horse with minor changes on his X rays can be very lame.
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post #20 of 21 Old 01-31-2013, 07:40 PM
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I am very, very far from criticizing you. I am *delighted* to be conversing with someone who wants to do the right thing by a senior citizen, regardless of the cost or commitment, and also someone who doesn't blindly accept recommendations without doing their own research. ("Yippee! The vet says I can keep riding if I inject this stuff!" Is an all too common attitude.)

I do understand there are parts of the country where your turnout setup is the norm or better than the norm, I have the luxury of good sized paddocks in Va so I'm spoiled.

Auctions and rescues are full of horses just like your nice horse, whose owners did not share your sense of responsibility and commitment.

Good on you!
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