Lame , no heat, no swelling, no pain on palapation ?!

Hoof_Prints

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My friend has a 6yo tb x ish who has recently gone lame on the front left. She is quite overcautious and had the vet out immediately, but he said box rest with in hand walking and advised not to bute as the lameness is minor, so she can monitor it. The horse is usually very sound, passed a 5 stage vet as a 4yo, hunted 2 seasons and team chases without a days lameness over all sorts of ground. She took him out hacking last weekend and noticed he was not right, trotted up and definitely lame with a noticeable but minor head nod, happy to put full weight on and walking sound. He had an easy week, had jumped a small course the day before so nothing out of the ordinary. Eating fine, no behavioural changes. Vet said no swelling he could find, he lifted the leg and squeezed down the tendon, moved the joints, did hoof testers, checked for strong pulse, and absolutey nothing. Trotted up with a flexion test and no change whatsoever! The horse was lunged on a hard circle and looked more sound with no change when trotted on the lame side, more lame on a straight line with a small nod.

I've not seen the horse trot up myself, but this is what I've been told. My friend is having a huge panic atm and I said I'd ask to see what I could find out for her as she is not very computer savvy! Horse is left on box rest for a week to see if there is any improvement and then I think the vet mentioned nerve blocks or something.

Thanks for reading, any information appreciated :)
 

TheSylv007

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Nerve blocks would be the next step to try and isolate where the pain is - could inside the hoof which wouldn't be all that easy to detect. Then after that it could be x-rays to see what's what. Box rest is the safest thing until the vet returns I would say (speaking from experience with a tendon injury inside the hoof!). Hopefully it's nothing to worry about :)
 

Hoof_Prints

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After googling it seems injury in the hoof is most likely, hope its not serious as she will be gutted. There is no heat in the hoof though and not lame on a circle so that is odd. The horse is a wimp and he will go non weight bearing at a scratch (that would be the tb in him!) so fingers crossed
 

Izzwizz

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MRI would find out if is a soft tissue injury in the hoof. My mare injured her DDFT in her hoof, was on off lame after rest etc. Only way to find out soft tissue injury, Xray for bony problems.
 

NZJenny

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Could easily be a hoof abscess. They are sent to drive owners nuts - may well not show up with hoof testers, horse may only be lame some times or going in one direction, or on soft or hard surfaces.

It might go on for a month, or pop out of frog/heel/coronet next week.

Horse might just be a little bit lame for awhile, or three legged lame for a week or more.

IME they resolve faster with movement.
 

only_me

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The last horse I knew that was lame (about 4-5/10), but no heat, no swelling, nothing on scan, no change on flexions or pain on palpation and was eating/normal behaviour etc. had cracked their pastern - small break about an inch long. Horse was also known for being very sound history.

I'd be asking vet to X-ray horse immediately!
 
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Janovich

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Echo Only-Me...

Could be a number of things inside the hoof, which, as others have said, are difficult to detect without any help of an XRay at the very least for bone issues....definitely. I'd also be inclined to book an MRI too for soft tissue damage.

My boy had, as it turned out, a sub solar abcess a few years back, that gave symptoms similar to yours,..turned out to be 2 abcesses, one on top of the other and it took a fair while to rectify, but we got there in the end.

Good Luck and keep in touch to let us know how things are going.
 

Pinkvboots

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It could be anything to be honest if after the rest period the horse is still lame nerve blocks would be the next step to find where the lameness is, the they X ray or scan the area to see what's going on then you go from there, you only really need an mri if nothing shows up on X ray or the scan, hopefully it won't be anything too serious.
 

Hoof_Prints

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Thanks for all replies, very helpful ! I'll be in touch with her later, I spoke to her yesterday and apparently the horse trotted up sound with just one step of lameness so she rang the vet who said to keep resting over the weekend with gentle in hand walking, then I think he's coming out on Tuesday to advise where to go from there. He seems reluctant to go ahead with MRI and X rays just yet.. maybe a second opinion would be good on that one. She has been giving the leg a good look over and she said she found what could be a small knock on the pastern (possible over reach and knocked the leg?) but again, no pain on pressing so I'm inclined to think it's in the hoof, but obviously need scans for that! I'll take a photo of replies and send it to her :) thanks again
 

be positive

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It seems very early to be asking for an MRI to be done, usually they are the final step in diagnostics after nerve blocks have isolated the area, xrays have been done and nothing is found even then insurance companies will want to know it is essential before they are happy to pay the £1k+ costs involved, if they are done too soon and it proves to be an overeaction then they may refuse to pay.

As the horse is progressing in the right way there is every chance it was just some deep bruising or a tweak that will settle and be no problem, most vets will take a conservative route initially with this type of issue with good reason, we would be complaining if every slightly lame horse was immediately sent in for a full workup running up huge bills and sending insurance premiums even higher.
 

Hoof_Prints

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Thanks that will be reassuring for her, I haven't seen the horse since but she says he is better. I haven't had MRIs or X Rays on mine so I'm struggling to advise her on those. He has the weekend anyway to improve and then the vet will do nerve blocks :)
 

Tnavas

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Before going down the expensive route - poultice the life out of the foot, if there is an abscess in there brewing, keeping the horse on really dry surface as in box rest the abscess is likely to diminish. Using a wet poultice will soften the hoof and draw out any abscess.

How long ago before the horse went lame was it shod, could be a pricked foot or a nail bind.
 

Goldenstar

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I would have the foot blocked out and see what happens .
The last time I had a horse who sounder on the small circle trot up than the straight time is was a ligament injury in the foot so that's the sort of thing I would be thinking .
 

Hoof_Prints

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Last update is the vet is still coming Tuesday but the horse trotted up sound today after gradually improving over the last few days, the horse has been having turn out as he was starting to kick the walls and stamp hard with front feet, he looned about a bit which was worrying but came in sounder than before, and has been sounder since having turn out. I'm a bit lost with it as I haven't seen him but I take her word for it, at least that's good news! I suppose it will just be waiting to see if he stays sound from now. Thanks again for all the replies. it's all very useful knowledge :)
 

old hand

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One thing that I find helpful in these situations is to paint both feet with water, make sure the stable door is shut so that the sun doesn't get on them and then see if one area dries quicker than any other. If no heat at all they will both dry exactly the same. Not scientific I know but it helped find a fractured pedal bone in one I had. The vet then did some tests but we did find an area of heat that we couldn't feel. He didn't react to the vet's tests and ran up and lunged sound , just felt off and bucked me off but did not appear lame.
 

swellhillcottage

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One thing that I find helpful in these situations is to paint both feet with water, make sure the stable door is shut so that the sun doesn't get on them and then see if one area dries quicker than any other. If no heat at all they will both dry exactly the same. Not scientific I know but it helped find a fractured pedal bone in one I had. The vet then did some tests but we did find an area of heat that we couldn't feel. He didn't react to the vet's tests and ran up and lunged sound , just felt off and bucked me off but did not appear lame.

That's a great idea re painting water on feet!
 

Hoof_Prints

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I'm definitely going to use that one in future with the water, good idea!
I spoke to her today, she decided to cancel the visit with her vet and try another recommended to her. He found a tiny bruise on the foot with hoof testers and said the horse was 99% sound with just the odd "ouch step". He said he should be back fine in a few days. Good news for everyone :)
 
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