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Lameness Forelimb: Evaluating Head Movement

Presentation given at OSU Annual CVHS Conference for Veterinarians and Veterinary Technicians

kevin keegan

on 24 September 2017

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Transcript of Lameness Forelimb: Evaluating Head Movement

There is More to the Head Nod Than "Down on Sound": Forelimb Lameness in Horses
What is the best motion parameter to look at to detect forelimb lameness?
Limbs, Head, Joints,Torso?????
Vertical Movement of the Head is Less Variable and, therefore, more precise and sensitive
So, it seems we are not left with much
Not True!!
Vertical Movement of the Head
presence of lameness
side of lameness
amplitude of lameness
timing of lameness (impact or pushoff)
We all have heard of "HEAD NOD"
Head moves down on the good leg
Head moves up on the bad leg
This is only true in horses with severe lameness
RF Foot Height
Head Height
Should I look at excursion or position?
You should look at position
Head nod in the normal horse
Horse will always move head away from the feet during the time of peak pain
“As a result of lameness in the forelimb, the head will DROP when the sound foot lands and RISE when weight is placed on the unsound foot or limb”.
“The head and neck elevate or RISE when the lame forelimb is bearing weight or hits the ground and [will] NOD DOWN or fall when the sound forelimb hits the ground…it is immediately obvious that the elevation of the head and neck is much easier to see than the head nod down”.
This is what I teach to student.
don't get sidetracked looking at the limbs
start with "low on sound" (not "down on sound")
use "up (or high) on bad" as last resort
most forelimb lameness impact to midstance
few forelimb pushoff lameness conditions
gaited horses
foxtrotters/Saddlebreds - EVALUATE UNDER SADDLE
What about ridden horses?
Lunging and Forelimb Lameness
lunging exacerbates forelimb lameness
inside limb - apparent impact common, especially on hard ground
outside limb - apparent pushoff common, especially on soft ground
Forelimb lameness and riding
not difficult for rider to "cause" an apparent forelimb lameness
very difficult for rider to "mask" a real forelimb lameness
must be tracking correctly, along 2 lines
All the information you need to detect forelimb lameness you can get from evaluating vertical movement of the head
Vertical movement of the head is the most sensitive indicator of forelimb lameness (mention exceptions)
some things I know to be true (I have measured them)
some things are ONLY my opinion
Lameness has ALWAYS bothered me
My Apologies ahead of time
It's not all it's cracked up to be
Full transcript