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When laminitis is a major concern and a damaged hoof wall is restricting blood flow to the laminae and resulting in further inflammation, Amy Rucker says it may be time for a hoof resection. The speaker at the 2011 International Hoof-Care Summit and an equine veterinarian with Midwest Equine in Columbia, Mo., says the distal rim of the coffin bone sometimes becomes infected due to both a compromised blood flow and dying tissue. When the resulting fluid reaches the lamella interface and leaks out at the coronary band, the coronary band will often swell and slip over the hoof wall. The wall then cuts into the swollen tissue, resulting in additional inflammation and further blood supply restriction. Rucker says removing a portion of the hoof wall can relieve the pressure on the laminae and help restore the essential blood supply.
Succeeding with therapeutic shoeing boils down to starting with a balanced hoof capsule that is in good condition and trimmed properly, says Tracy Turner. Once this occurs, you can modify a shoe to do certain things to help the skeletal column underneath it, says the Elk River, Minn., equine veterinarian.
“This may include modifying the toe of the shoe to ease breakover, shifting the breakover or changing the weight bearing area in the heels or branches of the shoe,” says Turner. “The key is to always start with a good hoof capsule and not rely on a shoe…