How to Take Care of Your Horse After Sacro Iliac Joint or Lumbar Facet Injections, Alberto Rullan VMD
Written by Alberto Rullan, VMD on Oct. 24th 2020
in this article, i will give you a step by step guide on what to do with your horse after it has Received Sacro Iliac Joint and/or Lumbar Facet injections.
After reviewing hundreds of recoveries at Equine Performance Innovative Center (EPIC), we have discovered that the secret to a proper recovery of an injury is rehabilitation after treatment.
For centuries, horse people have been searching for the "one-shot" approach to rehabilitation and recovery. This has not been discovered yet. However, every day we have more data and science on how to get horses "back to battle" faster and more efficiently than ten, or even 5 years ago.
The age of "let's wait and see what happens" is probably about to be extinct. We welcome the new age of "let's make it happen" and "let's do everything we can to make the horse better. Therefore, this is how we make it happen.
The first thing I tell my clients is that it takes about 5 to 7 days to get the maximum antiinflammatory effect from the injections. Expecting a sound horse before the product can make an effect on the horse can lead to frustrations and desperate decisions. Once the product does its job, then the horse will gradually start feeling better.
The second most important fact, and perhaps this should be equally important is the understanding that every horse with back pain has a biomechanical component.
What does this mean?
In simple terms, it means we need to work with the whole body in order to relieve the pressures and tensions that are causing or aggravating the lameness. Your farrier-veterinarian-trainer team will join forces and determine what is the best biomechanic arrangement for your horse.
Now the most sought question: How long until I can exercise my horse?
As a rule of thumb, after Sacro Iliacs or Lumbar injections due to arthritis (not a fracture), your horse will be in sall rest for 24 to 48 hours after the treatment. Followed by hand walking for 15 to 20 minutes daily for the next 7 to 10 days. IF you feel that your horse needs to go to competition before this period, please make sure there is no back pain and training to your expectations.
I usually recommended to give Flunixin Meglumine (Banamine), or Phenylbutazone (Bute) daily for 3 to 5 days post injection. I you chose to do banamine you will give 1.1 mg/kg which is about 10 cc intravenous or by mouth. If you chose to give bute, the prefered dose is 2mg/kg which is about 1 gram for a 1000 pound horse.
In another article, I will talk to you about chiropractic work, acupuncture, physiotherapy, pulse electromagnetic field therapy magna wave, underwater treadmill, and more. I always encourage working with these alternative therapies as an adjunct to my therapies.
What if I don't have those fancy machines?
What can I do at home?
Stretching exercises are an excellent tool that anyone can do at home. Below I will show you some of the most popular stretching exercises you can use with your horse. We use fun names for this exercises such as "butt scratches" and "carrot stretches"
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Performance Equine Veterinary Services was founded in 2009 with the mission to provide the best available treatments to the horse with the best customer service available for the horse owner.
About Author: Alberto Rullan, VMD
Dr. Rullan graduated from the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine in 2006. Dr. Rullan did a one-year equine medicine and surgery internship at Louisiana State University Veterinary Teaching Hospital and Clinic where he obtained advanced training in diagnostic and therapeutic techniques in equine medicine and surgery.
Dr. Alberto Rullan co-founded Performance Equine Veterinary Services with his brother William in 2009.
In 2017, Dr. Rullan founded Equine Performance Innovative Center. EPIC is a comprehensive Equine Rehabilitation Facility in Ocala, FL and unique in its class.
One of his favorites quotes is : "Work hard, achieve the impossible"