Minimally Invasive Injury Treatments
In the horse industry everyone is concerned about time and money. We all know expense is at the top of the list of concerns when it comes to competition horses many times at the expense of the horses who need time to heal. Because we ask our horses to give their all when they compete, as with any athlete there are going to be injuries of varying degrees.
The treatments for injuries vary from oral/IV/IM meds, blisters, hot irons, frequent injections, tapping joints to drain and surgeries. Thankfully we have more options now than ever before in our approach to healing horses.
Over the past few years I have faced the decision of how to heal racing injuries and found PRP (Platelet-Rich Plasma) to be a very successful solution! Here are a few examples of my experience with PRP.
1) For a two year old filly who had started doing speed work, she came back from her training one day with sore inflamed shins, which is basically shin splints to you and me. If you have ever had them you can relate to her level of sensitivity. I opted to try PRP, taking her own blood, spinning it down in a centrifuge and re-injecting the healthy platelets into her shins.
The filly was tranquilized to make sure she didn't move during the injections and it was quick and easy. My vet charged $600 for the whole procedure which includes both legs.
It was well worth it. The vet recommended 3 stall days and 3 walking days, after that it was up to me how I wanted to rehab. I continued walking her in hand for 3 more days, jogged under saddle for week two, jogged and light galloping for week 3 and galloped normally for week 4. Then she was ready to resume full training with speed. We x-rayed again to make sure the shins were in good shape and they were.
2) My four year old filly had ankle surgery six months before, now she was back in full work. Before we took her to the races we decided to do the PRP treatment to make sure her ankles stayed solid. She has raced 4 times now finishing second in an open allowance race and her ankles remain cold and tight.
The treatments are said to last 6 months which will take us through the 2015 season. I am thrilled with these results and the lack of invasive, painful, time and labor consuming therapies that we used to go through.
|4 year old Playrockforme in fine form with PRP therapy.|
3) Every time I have a horse that does have to have a surgery such as removing bone chips I follow up with PRP. It speeds up the healing process and makes the area stronger than before with much less invasion to the horse's systems and health.
For all the details on PRP, Stem Cell and IRAP treatments go to the following link for the article: