Research Journal: May/June 2016

The information, ideas and opinions expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily represent those of the United States Department of Agriculture.

Joint Injections Compared

Joint injections using corticosteroids, hyaluronic acid (HA) or a combination of the two are commonly used to treat synovitis and arthritis in performance horses. In this study, researchers compared the efficacy of one type of corticosteroid (triamcinolone acetate, TA) with and without HA for the treatment of lameness, localized to one limb only that responded to a diagnostic joint block. Eighty horses of various breeds were enrolled in the study with follow-up at 3 weeks by re-examining the horses and 3 months by an owner questionnaire. No other medications were permitted during the first 3 weeks of follow-up.

The median lameness score was 2/5, the average horse had been lame for about a month; and coffin, fetlock and knee joints were included. At 3 weeks, improvement in joint effusion was seen in both groups. A successful improvement in lameness was seen with TA alone in 88% of the horses, while improvement with TA plus HA was seen in only 64%. After 3 months, only about half the horses had returned to their previous level of work with no difference in this outcome between treatments. Only four drug-related adverse treatment responses (localized swelling and hives) were reported with no difference between the treatments.

— de Grauw JC et al. EVJ 2016; 48:152-158

Foot Measurements And MRI

Researchers in Italy examined the possible associations between radiographic measurements of foot and tissue diagnoses obtained using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). Seventy-four feet from 52 lame horses were used in the retrospective…

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Albert Kane

Albert J. Kane, DVM, MPVM, Ph.D.

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