I am now back at university leaving my mum to deal with Trooper's injured tendon. On Tuesday he had the platelet rich plasma (PRP). I would have liked to be there to see what was done but I am also glad I wasn't as I am very squeamish, especially with needles! Here is some information about what was done.
The treatment was able to be carried out in Trooper's own stable. This was good as Trooper is not good at travelling and we would have risked him making the injury worse. The pros and cons have to be balances as carrying the treatment out in the stable increases the risk of infection as the do the injection right into the tendon. The bedding was all removed from his stable and it was cleaned with disinfectant. After the treatment it was also bandaged.
PRP is quite a new treatment in horses but the results so far seem to be very promising.
They took a blood sample from him which was then filtered to remove the plasma. I was wondering how this was done before the visit as the only method I have come into contact with for separating blood is using centrifuge machines. The blood was run through filters, I am not sure on the exact details of this though.
The plasma that had been removed was then injected into the tendon sheath at the site where it was injured. This works because in the plasma it is rich with platelets which is the part in the blood which helps the injury to heal. This is useful to use, especially in the lower leg as equines have a poor blood supply and this will give them the extra boost they need to help it heal.
He has been reduced from 2 bute a day now down to 1. Although for 2 days after the treatment he had 2 bute again. When I last saw him (23/9/11) he was lame in walk on 2 bute . He is now sound in walk on 1 bute and the vet said in trot he is 3/10 lame so the lameness is definitely improving.
My mum is still hosing his leg for 20 minutes twice a day to help with the inflammation. He is also wearing bandages over night. We have bought him some boot bandages which will be easier to use but they are neoprene and we are going to wait until the weather is cooler before we use them as they may make his legs sweat. He is being turned out in the field for around 6 hours a day to try and prevent him from getting stiff.
He has also been having ultrasound treatment carried out by the veterinary physiotherapist which has been helping with the swelling.
He will be having an ultrasound scan in a week or two (I can't remember) to see how the healing is going. I am going home in just over 6 weeks so hopefully I will notice a big improvement from the last time I saw him.