Horse bursa injuries

We are finally getting rain here in South Central Texas but not a moment too soon. I have noticed an increase in horse bursa injuries this year and I believe this has to do with how hard the ground has been.

Bursas are pouches of fluid over joints and bony parts of the body. For instance, you have a bursa over the front of the knee, at the back of the elbow, at the point of the shoulder, at the top of the withers, and al the back of the hock. I may have missed a few but these are the main ones that have trouble.

When the horse lays down, rolls and gets up and down theses bursas can get injuries if the surface is hard. When a bursa gets injured it fills with fluid and this stretches out the lining and once this lining is stretched it does not go back to normal.

In the horse these bursa injuries have different lay names depending on where they occur. At the knee they are hygromas, at the elbow it is a shoe boil, at the shoulder the name is bicipital bursitis, at the withers if the bursa gets infected it is fistulous withers, and at the hock a capped hock.

Up until last year, I did not have much luck getting these swellings down and horses had to live with the blemish. Last year I had a young warmblood get a large hygroma and his owner was not willing to let him have this blemish. She was prepared to try surgery even though she knew the chance of success was low. After trying many products we used for and we were pleased that it brought the swelling completely down.

I have had some response to several homeopathic remedies, especially for shoe boils but this was the first time I had ever had good results with treating a hygroma. The hygroma on this yearling was over a year old so give the formula 11 a try even on a old injury. Madalyn

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About Madalyn Ward, DVM

This blog provides information based on my unique take on horse health and well being. The articles are based on experience of treating and working with horses for over 40 years. In most cases the articles are focused on an holistic approach to health and management. When conventional medicine offers good research or therapy, I share this information as well. Madalyn Ward, DVM

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