Possible NASTY abscess (a bit long)


Portagecreek
 

I have been away for awhile but a new bout of abscesses has come around. (Main questions in bold below) A couple weeks ago my guy slipped on the ice and went down onto both front knees. This was followed by swelling, heat and digital pulse in the LF, some swelling up the pastern and leg. My vet examined him, prescribed Bute to get the swelling down. I knew I shouldn't give it him but the leg was so stocked up. A few days after Bute, we suspect ulcers came back and he stopped all 'meals' and hay only. I started aloe right away (1/2C) but he was not interested in any supplements/hay pellets. We were on a great diet of MadBarn, jiagoluan and Mov-Ease....now it's all off the table!

On this past Monday, he started getting a muscle spasm/tremor in his RIGHT front tricep area and some heat in his right front hoof. This gradually worsened - the tremors and unwilling to bear weight (but mind you still recovering from a draining abscess on the LEFT front). We thought it may be an abscess. Given the whole virus situation, vets are only doing emergency calls but I did pick up Omeprazole to start and sent him a video of the muscle spams and continuous shifting of the legs. He agreed it was most likely an abscess but he has difficultly standing on the other leg to be investigated by our farrier.
5 days later, the tremoring is worsened and he can hardly stand to bear weight, it's getting worse, which may be 'good' news (but I am on the verge of mental breakdown! :))
We have been able to very quickly clean out and apply a home made poultice (our tack supply stores are closed completely so I am out of Animalintex poultice and using a diaper, Epsom salts, warm water and ACV).

I am quite sure this is a terrible abscess but you know how we second guess these things and watching them in pain is awful. He's laying down a lot now, to relieve pain I am sure. I am concerned that he gets cold from laying on the wet ground (it's still winter here, snowing today), and isn't eating while laying down.
Thoughts on laying down a lot?
Anyone else had muscle tremors/spasms due to an abscess lasting a week?
IS my DIY poultice OK? (keep in mind, pandemic, basically have common household ingredients)
About how long before you have noticed improvement with appetite on Omeprazole?
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Eleanor Kellon, VMD
 
Edited

Natalie,

The key to getting through this is to concentrate on eliminating the cause of the pain, not on the pain itself. I know that's easier said than done but if he is  passing manure, urinating, drinking and eating he'll  make it through this until you can get rid of the cause. Make sure he has a protected spot with a dry bed to lay on if he chooses to do that. If he has that option and prefer to lay elsewhere, so be it. His choice. Laying down is fine. Horses have spent months down and still recovered.

The muscle trembling is pain, and muscle fatigue from keeping the leg nonweightbearing.

I hope you have stopped the bute completely. It is all risk, no benefit. He obviously isn't getting much of anything in terms of pain relief but it is threatening gut (stomach and colon), kidney and also slowing resolution of the abscesses. Stop it. Get him back on Jiaogulan even if you have to syringe it in. You can use it with the omeprazole. Pain also decreases appetite so you can't use that as measure of omeprazole working. It's working! Soak all hay (is it tested yet?). No reason he can't have the Mad Barn in some beet pulp or sprinkled on hay. Be sure to salt his hay to keep water consumption up.

Your homemade poultice is fine, and likely more effective than Animalintex which doesn't actually draw anything out.

For pain relief, try rubbing the coronary bands, back of the pasterns, lower legs and any hard muscles with Sore No More (here's one Canadian source: https://www.pleasantridge.ca/index.php/horse-health/liniments/sore-no-more-2.html ). Stores may be closed but mail order isn't! The Arnica formula is very effective and horses also respond very well just to being "fussed over".

Once this crisis has passed (and it will), focus on getting your diet as tight and balanced as possible and make sure the trim is meticulously balanced.
--
Eleanor in PA

www.drkellon.com 
EC Owner 2001


Portagecreek
 

Thank you Dr. Kellon!
Shortly after I wrote this I went back to check on him and he was down, flat out and labored breathing, pale gums and high heart rate. We could not rouse him and he was soaked from the mud and shaking all over. We called the emerg. vet and she came out. He had decent gut sounds but very lethargic and would not lift his head. She gave him banamine which didn't seem to help and then Detomidine. I am sure it was the wrong thing to do as far as drugs, but I had no choice. It was that or euthanize him. I couldn't leave him suffering in the mud. 
We were able to get him up then and he had a drink and started eating hay. He seems ok now.

RE. the MadBarn, etc. he will not eat anything but hay now.
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Lavinia Fiscaletti
 

Natalie,

In emergency situations you do what needs to be done at that time to stabilize the situation, regardless of whether it would be the best thing in general for an IR/PPID horse.

Is he blanketed? That might be a thought to keep him from getting soaked if he insists on laying down in wet areas.

Glad he seems more comfortable right now.

--
Lavinia, George Too, Calvin (PPID) and Dinky (PPID/IR)
Nappi, George and Dante Over the Bridge
Jan 05, RI
Moderator ECIR


Portagecreek
 

thanks Lavinia, we did what we had to. It was a terrible morning. He is blanketed now and his waterproof blanket is drying next to the wood stove now:) We threw it down so I could lay next to him and it got soaked.
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Portagecreek
 

wondering if anyone has had their horses with abscesses/laminitis lay flat out and eat hay that way for longer periods of time? That is what I am seeing now so I go out to the field around noon to give him a drink and take more hay out. He usually has a good drink and eats the hay but lying flat out on his side? I don't know if this is better or worse than recumbent? I guess I panic because I was always told growing up that horses shouldn't lie down for long. Starting to get that emotionally burnt out feeling again.
Also with this abscess from h#)) it looks like currents of pain go through his body....?
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Lorna Cane
 

Hi Natalie,

This is gruelling for you,I know.

It's important to have your vet's feedback  about his condition.

I'm only speaking up from afar  to share my own nightmare,when 5 of my herd sloughed their hooves,back in 2003. I've had a lot of experience with horses being down,for considerable periods of time...I'm sorry to say..
One of the boys had recurring abscesses, so that just when his hooves showed new growth,there would be a setback. He was down almost all the time, and often flat out. Very often.
I was despondent because I had always heard (I'm of a mature age,so to speak) that a horse is too heavy to spend much time flat out,but rather should be on his sternum.
Drummer hadn't read the book.
When it got to the point that he could stand for maybe 20 minutes, he would leave the indoor, find a patch of grass , and go down. For a while he would eat all the grass (not IR) within reach.Then he would lie flat , and reach more grass from that position. Big bare circle.

In this case, my boys had sloughed all 4 hooves. Painful  enough without abscesses.

Again, your vet is on the ground,so can see exactly what is going on with your boy.


--

Lorna  in Eastern  Ontario
2002


 


Portagecreek
 

Thanks for your reply Lorna. I am never one to shy away from calling the vet but as of this week they have really cracked down and are only doing emergency calls so I can only describe to him and send videos via email what going on.

I do feel a little better after you said yours would lie flat out too. I am torn between putting him outside where he invariably lies down in the mud and snow, but hoping being up and moving for many 10 minutes a day will move along the abscess venting .....or leaving him inside where it's easier for me to check on him and keep him from getting wet and cold. 

I feel guilty coming back to ask so many questions, but I think a lot of you know how all-consuming this is and much we want to do the right thing. I do still have him on Omeprazole 1/2 tube and syringing in 2 tsp of j-herb. Slowly the appetite is coming back, I am just amazed at a horse eating from a flat out lying position. My vet quickly mentioned giving Pepto too - never heard of this and I haven't gotten a reply since on the dosage, etc.

Thank you everyone for listening.<3
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Sherry Morse
 

Hi Natalie,

FWIW my Shetland pony got 60cc of pepto when he got a bit of runs from the spring grass. This is the current dosing protocol: https://www.drugs.com/vet/bismuth-subsalicylate-suspension.html which works out to abo 180cc for a 1200lb. horse.




Eleanor Kellon, VMD
 

If you're worried, take a video, take your horse's temperature, heart rate/pulse and respiratory rate. Include his gum color in the video. Send that to your vet. It's hard to watch but they can survive this. I wouldn't force him to move.
--
Eleanor in PA

www.drkellon.com 
EC Owner 2001


Lorna Cane
 

Hi Natalie,

I would be sure to get videos to my vet.

For me,having my horse warm and dry would be the way I would go. 

Never worry about asking questions.

--

Lorna  in Eastern  Ontario
2002


 


Lecia Martin
 

Hi Natalie, Don't know if this is doeable for you but when my guy was down for weeks on end - 7 as I recall we made a mound of dirt and sand for him to lie against.  He would lay there for hours, eat and drink.  He still goes there to this day to have a nap.  Don't despair, it will get easier and better.   Hope this helps.  Stay healthy!
--
Lecia and Flyte
Alberta, Canada
Mar 2017
 


Portagecreek
 

Thank you for your replies. The paddock has a slight grade to it and he laid back facing down the hill and could not get up tonight. I think we got there not long after he was trying but he was tired from struggling and thank goodness we had help to get him up and back in the barn. Hard on my nerves! I took the poultice off and it's certainly going to drain soon I think: I saw a little tiny separation in the bulb and it's very sensitive. On a good note, he passed manure and was eating hay in the stall when I left. 
--
Natalie

New Brunswick, Canada

2019

Case History: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Tane%20and%20Natalie/Tane%20Case%20History%2012312019.pdf

Photos: https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=95995


Eleanor Kellon, VMD
 

Keep him inside, with banked bedding if possible.
--
Eleanor in PA

www.drkellon.com 
EC Owner 2001


Lorna Cane
 

Hi Natalie,

What we really need is an updated case history for Tane.  I don't see any details since last November, in his case history.

Would be really helpful if you could also provide updated xrays,and hoof pix. 

--

Lorna  in Eastern  Ontario
2002