Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Images of Kits Shoulder

As promised, the image results of x-rays and ultra sound of Kit's right shoulder.
The darker crecent shape that of the joint being held open by swelling. The break lines are on the forward portion of the humerus bone (the one at the bottom of the joint), that buldge to the left, the darker shadowy area is the break. The second break is to the rear of the joint again on the humerus, and it is the darker shadowy area there.  They are healing so they are a bit less clear in the image.
This image is a bit closer in and at a bit of an angle, showing the view a bit form to the front of the joint.

The green arrow is pointing to an actual fracture line of the bone, on ultra sound image, the bone edge is the white line.  Any breaks in that line indicate fracture or bone fragments as in the image below. 
The good part of this image, is that motled white area above the bone, that my friends...is MUSCLE. And while there is still fluid (i.e. swelling and blood) to be disappated from the tissue, that muscle is alive and healthy. 
This is the shoulder muscle only, but at the bottome those two white dots side by side, are bone fragments.  They will stay there and do no harm, and they are not in the joint itself, so healing is looking good.

Update as of today, Kit is moving very well, and eating even better!  Has a warm and shaggy winter coat already, oh dear does that mean a hard winter?  He is reported to take time each day to trot and canter in his turn out, finishing off with a big buck, after which he limps for 3 steps, then walks normally.  I think, he is testing it out, and checks daily for his own progress. 

Shoulder is much less distorted.  I'll try for new pictures this weekend.  The swelling is down considerably, and he has much less pain.  Eyes are clear and attitude is evident!

He had his second trim last week and we were able to support him gently, while the farrier, did her work on the supporting left front.  Complete trim took less than an hour.  Woo Hoo!!!! 


Sunday, October 16, 2011

Wisconsin Equine Clinic & Hospital

I had the local vet come out in September to evaluate Kit and get his input on the injury.  He examined Kit but could not tell anything definitive without x-rays or ultrasound images, and he had no portable equipment capable of imaging a shoulder. He recommended we take him to Wisconsin Equine for more through exam.

We took Kit to the clinic on Oct. 13th, nearly 6 months since his pasture accident, and 10 weeks into my ownership and the gentle therapeutic techniques I've been using on him.  Pressure point, Reiki, Therapeutic Touch, and bodywork (modified) for his tolerance.

We traveled in and arrived in rain showers, that fluctuated from light to heavy, so by the time we were inside we were quite soaked.

Dr. Jane Jardine, DVM showing me the first set of bone fragments from the shoulder joint.

Dr. D. Langers, DVM & Dr. Jane Jardine, DVM examined him, beginning with x-ray images of the right shoulder. I have the x-ray and ultrasound images and will try to post them later.  Kit has been sedated from the x-rays, but to his credit, he stood still through them all and they only sedated when they decided they wanted just 1 more shot and he decided he'd been patient enough!  It was nice that Dr. Langer, admitted that Kit was probably right.


It's amazing and wonderful what they can see now with the imaging equipment.  The breaks in Kit's shoulder bone were very obvious.  Three different places showed breakage and bone fragments.  You could see a smooth edge of the bone, like a smooth piece of string on the image, then a jumbled area of "string" with gaps, indicating where the bone fragments had broken off.  Areas of fragmentation were the front & back of the shoulder joint (lateras well as the medial edge by the sternum.

 Dr. Langer, DVM is using the ultrasound on the medial edge of the shoulder joint.  Interesting note, he didn't want to shave Kit for the exam, due to winter fast approaching, so he used alcohol as the medium to penetrate the tissue through the coat, it worked beautifully as it filled in all the air gaps, unlike the usual gel medium used for ultra sounds.


Fracture identified in two locations, but it is healing, and the bone is gradually coming back together.  The joint capsule is thickening and there is slight arthritis evident, as the body builds bone where bone has injury.  The joint is still somewhat separated, with a gap of approximately 5 cm at one side, mostly due to swelling still evident in the surrounding tissues.  This will gradually dissipate, and the joint should come back together itself gradually.  It all comes down to giving him time to heal.

Dr. D. Langer, DVM on prognosis and next steps.
We have started Kit on a supplement called Cosequin ASU to prevent further arthritis formation and support the joint health.  In addition to the Jiaogulan, a plant that grow wild in China, often referred to as "Southern Ginseng".  Which I'm using to strengthen his immune system, other stress-related symptoms and for it's anti-inflammatory properties. 

Dr. Langer stated that had he not seen the images of Kit's shoulder he would not have thought his injury to be so sever.  That watching Kit move, tracking so well and with hardly any limp, he is quite surprised by what we found and amazed at the healing that has already taken place.

His prescription for Kit's recover was as follows:

1.  Whatever you are doing, keep it up, because it's working.

What I'm doing, besides the supplements, passive range of motion, massage, light bodywork, Reiki, and Therapeutic Touch 3-4 times a week.  Gentle grooming and time together just bonding.

2. Keep Kit from feeling too good, too soon, so at this point a little pain is good as it keeps him from doing too much, or getting too frisky, possibly stressing the shoulder.

3. If we can keep it as stable as we have up to now by December we should be out of the woods.

4. Next spring, begin light training, and ground work.

5. I may be able to ride Kit by summer, but start in small increments, and if he is sore the next day, back off.

So good news and a positive outcome.  Quality of life for him has been my goal and I think we got that and then some! I am very grateful & blessed.
The sky as we left the clinic that evening...it reflected exactly how my heart felt, filled with promise, hope, and gratitude!

I'm very grateful for these veterinarians, their support in allowing time for healing, and their skills in diagnosis.

Skip and I were given a tour of the facility afterward, and I'll post more soon on Wisconsin Equine Clinic & Hospital.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Kit & I

This is Kit as of Sept 5th, the photos were a birthday present for me, from a dear client.  I've taken a lot of pictures of Kit since I adopted him on July 25th.  But I really didn't have any of the two of us, at least where I'm not working on him. Thought I'd share these with you.
Even with the injured right front shoulder, he is beautiful, and very special to me...I am blessed to have him in my life.

                                     Gotta love that face! Well...I gotta love that face...and I do!

The beginning of a lifetime together...


A Trim for Kit

 Kit is progressing well and responds well to multiple touch techniques I've been using on him.  Reiki, pressure point, and massage, as well as modified bodywork when needed.  He has gradually improved in the way he carries his body and movement.   He got trimmed 4 weeks ago, by an excellent, and most patient farrier Kendra Skorstad, who took the 1 1/2 hours of work to get all 4 feet trimmed and shaped.
His feet prior to the trim.

With gentle persistance and a willingness to allow Kit to find his comfortable spot, we got it done.  When trimming his injured leg, Kit would position himself against the stall wall and lean on it for support. He is very smart!

To finish the left front, or support leg, (the one doing all the work as the right is the injured leg), we could only lift it for seconds at a time.  I offered the wall for Kit to lean on, but evidently the pressure on the shoulder was painful and he would not do this as he had on the left side.  Ultimately, he moved in close to me, pressing his nose into my chest, I held his head under the jaw and he allowed Kendra to pick up the left front leg long enough to trim and finish it.

In this position, Kit transferred his weight into his neck and head, putting tremendous amount of weight into me, pushing into my chest, and hand, as I held.  My husband watched, wanting to step in as he saw my arm trembling with the strain of holding Kit up, but his fear of breaking the spell that was allowing the trim held him back.  I was grateful, for his intent and his good judgement, as I too think it may have broken the spell.  He even feared taking a photo my interfer, so we don't have a picture, but we do have a TRIM!!

What amazing creatures horses are...