Which injection for arthritis? - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 01-28-2013, 07:19 PM Thread Starter
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Which injection for arthritis?

My mare injured her stifles as a 2 yr old and has some arthritis started. I had her stifles injected two weeks ago. (She is now 8 yrs old). We did X rays of her right hocks and stifles since she is worse on that side.

This is what the vet said about her hocks "Hock films looked good other than a narrowing of some joint space. No OCD lesions were present". As for her stifle, all the vet said is that on the inside of her stifles, the bone is not as dense (bright) as it should be. He said if the stifle injections didn't help we could go ahead and inject her hocks as well.

She is somewhat better with the stifle injections, but not completely. Since funds are a little tight I am debating what would be better to try.

Hock injections will be about $500. I'm not entire certain that is the problem, as it feels like her stifles are still bothering her as well. Plus I am not certain I can afford to inject both hocks and stifles every 6 months!

Other options include injectable glucosamine, Adequan, Legend or Pentosan if I can get it. Possibly Tildren as well, but I am not sure if that would be recommended in this case?

Any suggestions? Obviously injectable glucosamine would be cheapest. The barn I work at swears by the injectable glucosamine...

Thoughts/or experiences with any of the above would be appreciated.
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post #2 of 10 Old 01-28-2013, 08:02 PM
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I would start with Legend or Adequan and see if you get any relief. Those are the only two injectables I have personally used. I got a Generic for Adequan and it was pretty reasonable. But, I really liked Legend better on the two horses I used it on.

I would shop around a little on the hock injections if you find you need more. Find some calf ropers, reiners or a cutting barn and ask who injects their hocks and what they charge. The vet near here that does the roping and cutting barns charges $150.00 per hock and he does a LOT of them. I think it is a little less even if you take them to his small clinic at his ranch. Otherwise, he works out of his truck. All of cutting barns around here use him.

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post #3 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 12:47 PM
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I would try a round of Adequan or Legend before getting her hocks done. If it doesn't make a noticable difference you can always do the hocks later. I have used Adequan with success- it keeps our 23 year old Grand Prix Schoolmaster going and going!

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post #4 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 12:56 PM
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I find Legend works very well. My 21 yr old TB has been on Legend for almost 4 years... he gets injections about every 8 months - a year... since we stopped jumping him 4 years ago and started him on Legend it helps him a lot... he was jumped way to much when he was young before we bought him, therefore, became pretty stiff with older age.

Just after the first shots he got, I noticed a difference, he was so much more "loose" and happy! Talk to your vet about it... the shots are a bit pricey, but VERY worth it.

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post #5 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 04:33 PM Thread Starter
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What about Pentosan? Has anyone tried that?
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post #6 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 05:06 PM
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I have used and am still using Pentosan.

Im gonna copy and paste what i wrote on another thread because its too much to type through again...

Okay, Here is my take on Pentosan. I absolutely LOVE this stuff. It has been a miracle drug for my mare and I'm very very thankful to have found it.

My mare is 5 years old. Was kicked in a well placed area on her hock. She was completely 3 legged lame, 5/5 on the lameness scale. Not able to place any weight on her leg what-so-ever.

She developed cellulitis, the leg exploded size wise. She contracted a bacterial infection. Was on antibiotics for 6 weeks with minimal improvement. The bacteria was pushed into the joint and we ended up having to do joint flushes to clear out the bacteria. During the flush, we diluted her joint fluid is a very severe fashion.

She was still very lame but slowly improving over the 2 months we dealt with this. We've had XRays done, and basically, after the bacteria got into the joint, it ate away her a chuck of her bone. So we are dealing with osteoarthritis. Or...Arthritis.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MgzSxVGgA0Y This video is after 4 days of a stall rest. The 2nd day after she placed weight on this leg again. As was able to slowly limp around.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dRUVzorJ-hE This is in October, about 6 weeks after the injury. Still limping.



These two are in December, after approximately 5 Pentosan injections. She has come a LONG way. I'm so incredibly happy.

She still has hock swelling, is still healing. I fear she'll always have some swelling in her hock. It gets worse when it's cold and you can tell she's just a little stiff but overall, my experience has been very good.

I gave the first Pentosan injection when Rumor got her 2nd joint flush. After the first flush, a sample was taken and the joint fluid was not sticky at all. It's supposed to be a syrupy consistency...Where if you put some on your fingers and then pull your fingers apart a 1-1/2 to 2 inch "string" should be between your fingers before breaking away. Rumor had NO string. It was like touching water. 1 week later, another sample was taken, she already had a 1 inch "string" of joint fluid that had built back up. In just ONE week. Amazing.

My Pentosan schedule was one 12ml shot every week for 4 weeks. (Loading doses) And then I went to one 6ml shot every 2 weeks. So now I'm only giving Rumor 2 shots a month. And that was because of how severe her case was. I pay $19 per shot. When I looked into Adequan, it was $42 a shot. I've also read numerous studies that say Pentosan works better then Adequan.

I was going to go with Adequan until my vet found the Pentosan. For one, it's cheaper. And two, it has anti-inflammitory properties in it, which Rumor needed due to the swelling of her hock.

Just before the cold weather hit us, I could hardly tell Rumor had ANY swelling in her leg what-so-ever.

I have 2 other horses that will be put on Pentosan before show season starts in the spring. My mom's barrel horse. And my Paint mare. Although she is bred right now, and I may have to hold off because I do not know what Pentosan will do to a fetus or a lactating mare. But eventually, I'll have 3 horses on it.

I also have Back On Track Hock Wraps for Rumor. Those seem to be doing a wonderful job and they are extremely well made and holding up better then I ever expected. I'd look into some of their products too...
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post #7 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 05:28 PM
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For the bone density issue, Adequan, Legend and Pentosan are not going to address that.
If you want to increase bone density, then a round of Tildren is going to be your best bet.

Legend is more of an anti-inflammatory, and will only serve to increase the amount of joint fluid, so in your case, unless the joints are severely narrowed, or there are spurs, you aren't going to see much improvement with it.
Adequan and Pentosan will serve to strengthen the cartilage in the joint.

IMO, if I were you, I would do the full treatment of Tildren, leave the horse for about a month (or what ever your vet recommends) and then see if the bone density has improved. At that point I would discuss with the vet what will be best to put the horse on. If the horse is much improved, I would try the Pentosan. If not then I think I would have an in depth conversation about the horse's quality of life.

Good luck!!

They say money doesn't buy happiness -- well happiness doesn't buy horses!
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post #8 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 07:07 PM
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My boy who has hock arthritis has had cartrophen injections. I think this is similar to Tildren. As I'm in uk things are different so don't know about anything else. The cartrophen has worked well for my horse and now with a good joint supplement he is sound and happy. Will get more injections if needed and hock injections if needed also.however in this country hock injections are much cheaper at around 120
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post #9 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 08:22 PM Thread Starter
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Thank you all so much!

I'm definitely going to put a call in with the vet and see what else we can try. I might even want to send her X rays over to the lameness specialist and see what she says.

She was better for about one ride about a week after the stifle injections. I rode her again today and she can't canter without switching leads behind. It is not as bad as before the injections, but still bad enough that it is not comfortable for her.

All the vet said the last time I spoke with him is that he wanted to try injecting her hocks next.

Anebel- interesting thought about trying the Tildren. I will be sure to ask him about that! How much does Tildren usually cost?

I was going through all the research on Pentosan last night, and it certainly looks worth trying.

I'm not worried about quality of life. She would probably be okay as a walk-trot horse. It is only her canter that is a mess. I've also been thinking of teaching her to drive, as an alternative career.
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post #10 of 10 Old 01-29-2013, 10:01 PM
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Tildren is about the same as a round of Adequan, you'd have to ask your vet.
If the stifle injections worked, but only for a little while, then IMO I would not do the hocks (because its obviously not a hock issue) and I wouldn't reinject the stifles because its not a long term solution.
Treat the bone density issue and you will hopefully have a sounder horse. If not, then IMO its only a matter of time before you are needing to inject her monthly just to be pasture sound... generally stifle issues have a very poor prognosis and degenerate quickly.
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