Suspensory Ligament Rehab treatments

Discussion in 'Horse Management' started by JG_Photographics, Feb 6, 2011.

  1. JG_Photographics

    JG_Photographics Active Member

    I was wondering if anyone has been successful in treatment of suspensory ligament damage, how you went about it and what your success rate was in a being able to compete as you did prior to the injury? Iv heard that horses have recovered to go on to compete 4 star... yet from what I've heard personally its doesnt seem possible.. Thanks :)
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2011
  2. EVP

    EVP Gold Member

    Rest and gentle rehab plus a few things like ultrasound therapy or swimming is pretty much the norm. Time is a great healer.......but so is a smart rehab program. Way too many injuries don't heal because people are in too much of a hurry to get the horse back into work.
    Also a very good farrier and wedges can help with strain and pain. There is also a surgical option that you should discuss with your specialist vet.
  3. sunline

    sunline Well-known Member

    Mine had an 8cm tear. I boxed for 3 months then went back for a checkup ultrasound, and there was bone growth starting to happen (not good) so then did surgery.
    So another 6months box rest after that. It was healing well (I had regular ultrasound check ups)
    We went back for the final "ok" to start slow work out of the box, 6 months after surgery.
    Then after all that he presented with another "mystery" lameness in the same leg. Nerve blocked up to the stifle and still lame. It was suggested to paddock for a year to see if nature could fix him.

    He's now a very happy and sound paddock ornament. Whether or not I could bring him back into work and he'd stay sound, I don't know. He's happy, I'm happy, I'm leaving it at that.
  4. kp

    kp Well-known Member

    A successful outcome with these injuries varies greatly with degree of injury and position of injury. If the horse has taken a piece out of the sesmoids or the insertion the prognosis is a lot worse than if they dont't. There are a few different treatments available. Ranging from injecting stem cell type products into the lesion, ultrasound and shock wave therapy. However a correct rehabilitation program.

    I have treated a few of these successfully. You can PM me if you like.
  5. Melle79

    Melle79 Well-known Member

    Does anyone have any good management strategies for an old Suspensory injury? There is still a little puffiness in the area, but no heat.

    I have been riding him bandaged but I'm wondering about after riding care?

    Do you cool the area? wrap it? any suggestions at all for proper care of the area as I haven't been able to find a huge amount of management ideas online
  6. kp

    kp Well-known Member

    I never bandage these injuries after the acute phase. I want strengthen the area. Bandaging won't achieve this, in fact it will do the opposite. Long slow miles when initially in work is the key.

    Cold hosing will be effective. However, if he had puffiness he most likely is not coping with the workload.
  7. Melle79

    Melle79 Well-known Member

    It's not so much puffy but lumpy there all the time
    he's been in a paddock for a few years since the injury. I'm not sure if it's puffiness or scar tissue though?

    It was no different after riding than it was before I hopped on and I've only ridden twice so far, and very minimal work.

    Off to the vet on Monday for them to have a proper look though before I decide to keep him or not

    So you don't bandage while your riding at all?
    I ride (injured horse or not) in bandages or tendon wraps anyway. Is this a bad idea for a ligament injury? I would have thought it could only help
  8. kp

    kp Well-known Member

    I use protective boots, never bandage. Bandaging won't strengthen the area, it will weaken it
  9. Melle79

    Melle79 Well-known Member

    any specific kind of boots or just splint boots? or tendon wraps?
  10. LNT

    LNT Well-known Member

    my endurance mare tore her suspensory ligament, we opted for the stem cell surgery, vet said it would help heal it quicker and with more flexability than if just left to heal on its own.

    3mths box rest, then light exercise, starting with walking on hard ground for 10-20mins and building up from there.

    18mths after the injury we completed our first 85km ride, no problems since so yes they can come back imo, but again i guess it depends on the severity of the injury and how its handled, the vet said it was important to treat it within a week of the initial injury for best results, which we did.

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