Equine sports medicine vets keep the equine athlete performing at its peak level in optimal health. We look at the whole horse including orthopedic soundness, gut health, hoof balance, muscle tone.
In Wellington, we spend most of our time providing equine sports medicine services. Gait and health assessment are a big component of this and we routinely apply our ‘lameness locator’ to the horse. In addition to trained visual assessment we can measure, in millimetres, movement of the head and pelvis. This is a number we can track over time as we apply various therapies.
Often imaging is needed for further assessment including digital radiography and ultrasound which is always available. When needed we refer images to boarded radiologists for secondary consultation.
We also have multiple different biologic therapeutics, in addition to routine treatments, including platelet rich plasma (PRP) systems, interleukin-1 receptor antagonist protein (IRAP), Prostride, Arthramid and stem cells. We also use functional electrical stimulation to treat muscle asymmetry and spasm which is common in sport horses.
Much like human athletes, horses require ongoing care to help the body recover from competition and training. Good nutrition, adequate rest (this can be active rest) from intense exercise, regular hoof care with attention to hoof balance is the foundation of a successful horse. As important is preventative veterinary healthcare which means once to twice a year teeth floating (dental care), parasite (fecal egg count) evaluation and vaccination.
All of these factors, and more, lead to long term success.