Mud Fever that never goes away?!

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Mud Fever that never goes away?!

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    02-06-2012, 07:10 PM
Mud Fever that never goes away?!

Hi guys,

I'm at my wits end with this scenario...

Long story short, I've owned my horse for just under a year. When I purchased him, he had what I thought looked like mud fever, however there was no heat in his pasterns, and the vet that I got to vet check him said they were just "warts" and they weren't causing him any discomfort so just to leave them alone. The lady said that he'd had the scabs on his pasterns since she first bought him (which would means prior to my purchasing him, he would've had these scabs for over 3 years...)

Now, when I got him back, I had my usual vet out to look at him, and he advised that it WAS mudfever (particularly as it was going into winter and he'd started to get some heat in his pasterns). So I went through the usual treatments to try and rid my lovely horse of it, but to no avail. I've tried everything, and I haven't any idea what to try next? I've spent thousands on vet bills, having him stabled, sedated and had the scabs clipped off (then bandaged and stabled him etc etc). I've tried all the lotions and potions suggested to me by friends and other horse people, but nothing seems to work.

So my question to you lovely folk are:

A) Are these the scabs of a typical mud fever outbreak?
B) how on earth can I get rid of them? Or should I just leave them be?
C) Is it possibly that this is scarring from and old or untreated case of mud fever that will just never go away?

:( I just want to make sure my boy is as comfortable as he can be! He's had a rough trot with previous owners and I just want him to be as healthy as he can be!

Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

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    02-06-2012, 07:16 PM
Hey there!

Those do look questionable.. My question is, when they cut them off, did they send them in for biopsy, or culture or anything? And how fast did they grow back?
    02-06-2012, 07:44 PM
Originally Posted by timingline    
Hey there!

Those do look questionable.. My question is, when they cut them off, did they send them in for biopsy, or culture or anything? And how fast did they grow back?
Thanks for your reply.

They were never biopsied because the vet said it was just mud fever.
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    02-06-2012, 07:52 PM
See, mud fever is typically caused by a bacteria or fungi. In theory, if you cut that source of bacteria, and treat the affected area, the mud fever shouldn't come back, which is why I'm skeptical.

Since I don't know what it is, it's hard to treat. I hope you find an answer though, good luck!
    02-06-2012, 08:03 PM
Thats whats frustrating me about it.

Manolo Mendez (Spanish riding school instructor) apparently has a stallion with similar scabs on his fetlocks to my boy. My friend was a live in student and noticed they looked the same, so she asked him about them. He said that the stallion had mud fever untreated by a previous owner, and the scabs became like scar tissue... because they'd also tried everything to treat it...

I could try another vet I guess. But it seems they all have vastly different opinions as to what it is.
    02-06-2012, 08:14 PM
There are lots of opinions out there haha. And it could very well be scar tissue, in which case, there's not a whole lot you can do, as long as these aren't causing him any pain or discomfort.
    02-06-2012, 08:25 PM
Its so bizarre... because often some of them will just fall off, but then others will grow in their place. I always check his legs and there's never any heat or discomfort. I still ride him because he seems absolutely fine (he's obviously been living with them for quite some time). He also has a rather nasty old scar on his hind leg (he stuck his leg through a float as a yearling or something) that has quite a bit of scar tissue. This never seems to heal 100% either and still has a scab which he sometimes knocks off... and he's had this scar allegedly since he was a yearling (hes now 14!!), which makes me think perhaps a nutritional thing? It may just be that his body is unable to heal over 100% with substantial scarring or skin blemishes? Hmmmmmmmm
    02-06-2012, 10:56 PM
It doesn't look like mud fever to me…it looks like warty sarcoids…but I am NOT a vet.
    02-06-2012, 11:18 PM
Thing is, when the scabs come off, they are very mud fever-like... They are clusters of hair with a scab attached.
    02-07-2012, 12:58 AM
To know for sure what it is you will have to have a biopsy done and I'm surprised as long as you have been dealing with this that a vet hasn't done one before now. Since you have been treating him specifically for mud fever and he still has it years later kinda hints to me it might not be mud fever, but something else. Another hint is that he's not bothered by it (no heat/swelling/pain etc.) and when those "scabs" fall off (or are cut off) they grow back. Not typical, at least in my experience, of mud fever. However, I am NOT a vet.

mud fever

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