Lameness problems continue to be one of the most common causes of performance issues in our equine athletes. While some lameness problems can be worked upon the farm it is helpful to do these at the hospital where all the diagnostic equipment is available. A thorough exam, which often includes flexion tests, hoof tester exam and diagnostic nerve or joint blocks, is used in combination with a good history to identify the location of the lameness problem.
Once the area of concern has been identified the next step usually requires some type of diagnostic imaging. Diagnostics available at our hospital include digital radiography and musculoskeletal ultrasound. After the images have been evaluated the next step is treatment. The treatment plan is designed for each individual horse and may include joint injections, shock wave therapy, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, rest, regenerative therapies, specific exercises or even surgery. At Neuse River Equine we incorporate acupuncture, chiropractic, and podiatry in the treatment plan when necessary. Frequently it will require a combination of therapies to hopefully return the equine athlete to its desired occupation.
We are fortunate to utilize the services of Dr. Meghann Lustgarten for advanced ultrasound imaging and radiology consulting.
Meghann Lustgarten, DVM, DACVR, DACVSMR earned her board certifications from the American College of Veterinary Radiologists in 2013 and from the American College of Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation in 2018. She has authored and co-authored multiple publications on musculoskeletal imaging in horses and has been an invited speaker at ACVS, ACVR, Duke and UNC.