OCD stifle - going on to develop degenerative joint disease?

gingerthing

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15 April 2009
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371
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Norfolk
I have a 9yr old TB who had been known to have OCD of the stifles previously to me having him. He has kept sound up untill now. Over the past couple of weeks he has had trouble with one of his hinds. At first the hoof was hot and the vet suspected a hoof abcess so it was poulticed with small effect. farrier also had a look days after but couldnt see any sign of any obvious abcess.

His lameness wore off for around a week and he seemed back to normal so I began riding again. One evening I lunged him lightly for 20mins and he was fine. The next day he leads out of the stable hopping lame on the same hindleg. No heat or swelling though. Vet called out to examine, flexion test carried out and he was severly lame. The vets diagnosed him as having possible arthritic changes to the stifle joint. I have been advised to bute him for two weeks and rest him, but he is still able to be turned out. Hes currently sound walking to and from the field (abit stiff first thing in the morning). if hes still not right then vet will Xray him. Hes just resting this hind alot and is very reluctant to weightbear on it when picking his other hind foot out.

Wondering what anyone else has to say about this, any experiences etc. Or what else it could be other that arthritic changes? What treatment options do we have?
 

ALO

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10 January 2011
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204
My horse is currently having treatment for a stifle problem,was 2 tenth lame which didnt improve with rest,vet said could be arthritic changes,or soft tissue including meniscal or cruciate damage.he has now x-rayed to look for bony changes, there is a slight bony spur one side but that is it.I have been told that since the changes are minor he should respond well to medication but only time will tell!apparently you can do arthroscopy which will tell you the extent of damage,we are trying the conservative route first tho.I'm sure if arthritis is suspected then x-rays will help a lot!good luck,it's much easier when you know exactly what the problem is!
 

debsflo

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1 August 2005
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lincolnshire
similar experience to me .if you look back on my threads daughters horse went lame off hind in feb,sound in walk 2/10 lame in trot .vet prescribed rest then bute ,x rays all clear but positive to spavin test. no improvement so down to newmarket for a week.nerve blocks,x rays,ultrasound all inconclusive .finally bone scan showed hot spots on stifle,meniscal and upper hock. she is home on restricted turnout for a month but diagnosis and prognosis still unclear.
 

JanetGeorge

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25 June 2001
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6,998
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Shropshire/Worcs. borders
I'm afraid this is one of the problems weith OCD. You often hear people saying a horse has got it at 6, 8, whenever. In fact it has almost certainly had it since it was no more than a year old - it just hasn't been diagnosed (or breeder knew it was 'suspect' but it settled down so they didn't look further!)

So horse has a 'chip' in the stifle, hock, where-ever. It just sits there doing no real harm until either the horse goes into SERIOUS work - or until enough time has passed for bony changes to occur around the chip.

You have two choices - x-ray and find out - and treat. Be aware that if arthroscopy is recommended you're looking at not much change out of £2,000. Otherwise, I'd be inclined to put him on a GOOD joint supplement (Riaflex Complete has done wonders with a couple of mine!) and some bute and when he comes 'sound', walk exercise for a couple of weeks. It MAY be that regular exercise and a good joint supplement will do the trick - at least for a couple of years.
 

gingerthing

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15 April 2009
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371
Location
Norfolk
Thanks everybody for the replies, unfortunately due to the OCD stifle being pre existing on the insurance Im really hoping that they dont want to operate :(. Hes on 2xbute twice daily and is still sore on it. This 2 weeks is going to go so slowly. Its heartbreaking to see him like this.
 

sye777

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4 March 2009
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65
Hi I had a similar problem with my boy. My outcome was the worst case and I truly wouldnt wish it on anyone but am aware how unlucky we were and that we were simply too late.
My previous posts would outline in more detail the problems I had but basically it was only through having the arthroscopy we had a true diagnosis.
The stifle is such a complex joint and yet most problems are solvable or workable with treatment so pls if your horse is not improving and nothing is helping do consider the arthroscopy.
My boy went through everything including IRAP and I am so grateful for having him back for those last few months but also for knowing what we were dealing with and therefore being able to know when to say enough is enough.
I am still not over losing him but I know we tried everything and he would never have come sound or been pain free.
I wish you all the best of luck with your horse. I am so sorry I cannot offer a more positive personal outcome but can honestly say that when I was "researching" for help with his stifle injury I was inundated with positive scenarios but mostly all after arthroscopy to highlight what exactly was going on.
Wishing you a speedy recovery x.
PS I also used Riaflex complete for 3 years with him and do believe it helped.
 
Joined
15 September 2010
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22
really feel for you :( ive got a 9 month old filly just been confirmed she has OCD in her stifles, was going to save for the £2500 operation but the vet has advised me to put her down....absolutly devestated xxx
 

gingerthing

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15 April 2009
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371
Location
Norfolk
Sye777 & forest imp I really feel for you both and sorry to hear of your stories (I read your prev threads sye). My boy is now no longer lame on his hind and walking sound to & from the field, he is also happily hooning round, extremely exitable :) and looks much more comfortable. Ive taken him off the bute from today to see how he is then. If he is still not right then will get vet to arrange Xrays.

Looked up Riaflex complete HA and am going to give that a try,
 
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