Whilst many detailed lameness investigations are better carried out at the clinic, for various reasons this may not always be possible. If this is the case, we offer an ambulatory service. Our dedicated ambulatory team are highly skilled in lameness investigations, including portable radiography and ultrasonography and can carry out a detailed investigation at your own yard.
In most cases lameness can be initially assessed at your own premises and we will move on to providing lameness diagnostic work-up at the clinic where vets are assisted by our experienced vet nurses to ensure that it is stress-free for both horse and owner alike
Lameness, and the resulting poor performance, can be caused by a number of reasons. Some can be diagnosed relatively easily while other, more complex cases, will require a detailed clinical evaluation including the use of using diagnostic imaging – ultrasonography, digital radiography, nuclear scintigraphy and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI).
On arrival at the clinic, your horse will undergo a thorough examination in one of our safe and spacious treatment rooms. It is important that we see your horse move so, in addition to our large non-slip trot up area which allows for assessment in hand, we have hard and soft lunge areas along with access to an indoor ménage for ridden assessment.
Once the level of lameness has been assessed, further diagnostics tests may be necessary including nerve blocking. This is a standard procedure where a local anaesthetic is injected into the joint or soft tissues around certain nerves and helps pinpoint the area causing pain or lameness allowing for further investigation.
If your horse has been referred to us by your own vets, we will work closely with them and, if needed, include your farrier, physiotherapist, osteopath and trainer to ensure a holistic approach. Should you need us to provide auxiliary treatments to help maximise your horse’s recovery, we also have an on-site farrier and physiotherapist if needed.
Some things to consider before bringing your horse for a lameness examination:
- Painkilling medications (i.e bute and danilon) should not be given for 2 clear days before your horse arrives for its examination.
- On the day of arrival, please try to ensure that your horse is demonstrating the lameness you have described so that we can see the problem.
- If the horse only displays the lameness when ridden, please bring your tack with you and let us know in advance that a ridden assessment is required.
- Occasionally, some lameness procedures can be very detailed, and we may require longer to complete the examination. Please be prepared to leave your horse overnight if necessary.
- Try to avoid having any farriery work carried out during the week preceding your appointment as this can alter the lameness.
- Whilst you are welcome to wait during the examination, it can take some time and it may be preferable to leave your horse with us for the duration.
- The car park is constantly under CCTV monitoring and you are welcome to leave your trailer or horsebox at the clinic. Please let us know.