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Dawn Anderson
Member
Username: dr3ssag3

Post Number: 56
Registered: 7-2006
Posted on Friday, Mar 6, 2009 - 12:52 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I've been giving Contessa 2 grams of bute daily for the past 2-3 years to keep her comfortable, and am concerned about the long-term effects this could have on her system. Thus far, we've no indications that she's suffering from ulcers (thankfully), and I'm hoping to keep her from having any such issues from developing in the future. I'm also aware that there has been a link to bute and further degradation of the joint itself. Since she does have severe DJD and is relatively young (only 14), I need something that will keep her comfortable AND be more gentle to her system.

Any recommendations?

I can't help but wonder if her positive reaction to IRAP means that I can wean her off of the bute entirely if I'm feeding her something that can naturally take its place. I'm just leery of the efficacy of herbal products, and worry that should her pain symptoms not be taken care of, it could exacerbate her DJD, if not worsen the problem.

Thanks for the input in advance.
Dawn
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Dawn Anderson
Member
Username: dr3ssag3

Post Number: 57
Registered: 7-2006
Posted on Friday, Mar 6, 2009 - 12:54 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Oh, and before I forget, I've begun using Surpass prior to riding her. It has made the warm-up process this winter go much faster, and it seems to do the trick...but it's expensive so I was hoping to only have to use it in colder months.
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jody johnson
Member
Username: jojohn

Post Number: 7
Registered: 3-2009
Posted on Saturday, Mar 7, 2009 - 8:14 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

I don't know anything about DJD, but I was wondering if your farrier has tried anything. My father is a farrier, and I have seen him take navicular horses that can hardly walk and get them going. A friend of mine went to a vet who specializes in rodeo horses and they x-rayed the horse then shod him to get the pressure off. I believe he was shod at 57 degrees. Of course, this would just be something to ask your vet if you haven't already.
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Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 22494
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Saturday, Mar 7, 2009 - 10:14 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Dawn I don't see any problem with attempting to lower the phenylbutazone dose. I think the research suggesting worsening with the use of NSAID's is questionable. Firocoxib may be a alternative but it is not clear it is that much safer. Some have had results with Devil's Claw and there is research supporting it's pain relief qualities but there is no work on the safety of such a regimen, particularly over the long run.
DrO
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3chip
Member
Username: 3chip

Post Number: 13
Registered: 1-2009
Posted on Saturday, Mar 7, 2009 - 12:41 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

I have always found "Bute" to be a safe anti-inflamatory to use for pain relief. One of the keys to preventing gastrointestinal problems with Bute is to feed hay, not pellets or various grain mixes, although they can be fed with hay. But hay in effect buffers the Bute keeping the bowel and stomach free of ulcers. With all the talk one hears Bute is getting a bad rap in my opinion. Bute has caused ulcers in humans but diet has never been a part of the Bute usage protocol in humans. I have used Firocoxib, or Equioxx. It has never provided the relief that Bute has for me. I guess it gives some relief but my experience with it has not been satisfactory when compared to Bute. And it is very expensive. The literature on Equioxx states "Do not exceed 14 days of treatment." I have read recently the ravings about Equioxx and what a wonderful drug it is. Those articles were written by Merial representatives, the drug manufacturer. The administered dosage for this drug is convenient, once a day as compared to Bute which I give 1 gram twice a day for long term use. I use the powered, apple flavored Bute, mix it with homemade applesauce and give it with a worming syringe, twice a day, 12 hours apart. 12 hours apart is not etched in stone but I feed twice a day and I give the Bute at feeding time with the hay. To my knowledge, I have never had an ulcer in a horse and I have one mare who has been on Bute for a little over a year. So I would continue the Bute as long as you are feeding hay and I would not worry about ulcers. Back off of the Bute periodically to see if the horse still need Bute support. Research has shown ulcers in horses, as in humans, are caused primarily by stress and diet. Keep the belly loaded with hay and I don't think you will have an ulcer problem.
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Jesse Mitchell
Member
Username: mitch316

Post Number: 45
Registered: 2-2009
Posted on Sunday, Mar 8, 2009 - 1:59 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Dr. O can probably confirm this, but in dogs and humans you can give a medicine called Sulcrate (maybe messed up spelling) that prevents ulcers while taking NSAIDS. I do not know if it has been approved for equine use, but it is very effective and rather inexpensive too. It is also used to treat ulcers as well, and with antibiotics can heal an ulcer in a short period of time. Dr. O, I would be interested as well to see if it was ok to use in horses and what would be the recommended dose. Thanks.
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Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 22502
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Sunday, Mar 8, 2009 - 8:54 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

If only it were that simple Jesse. Research in horse has not found a benefit from sucralfate and I would note in humans it may help mild cases of some type gastric ulceration and may help a bit with the discomfort but is not much benefit at preventing NSAID induced ulcers.
DrO
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Dawn Anderson
Member
Username: dr3ssag3

Post Number: 58
Registered: 7-2006
Posted on Sunday, Mar 8, 2009 - 12:41 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

What about Curcumin? My MD said that it can be just as effective as NSAIDS without the side effects. I've looked into it a bit, but haven't found any dosage recommendations for horses, let alone products that contain it. The one exception is a product called Phyto-Quench. Anyone know of its efficacy?
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Danita Zaccheo
Member
Username: dzaccheo

Post Number: 30
Registered: 6-2008
Posted on Sunday, Mar 8, 2009 - 1:06 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

Hi Dawn,
I am in much the same position as you, trying to keep a horse with multiple arthritis issues sound and comfortable. I have also heard of using curcumin and have bought the spice but have not tried it yet. From what I have read, you can use the spice that is used for cooking (on the web sight earth clinic). I am not sure about the dosage. Also, I know Nex Tex Substi-bute uses curcumin and meadow sweet in it.

Is bute dosing heavily dependant on the weight of the horse? For example is 2 grams of bute for a 1500 lbs horse goes to have a different effect than on a 1000 lb horse?
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Shirley M
Member
Username: smacemon

Post Number: 6
Registered: 5-2006
Posted on Sunday, Mar 8, 2009 - 5:58 pm:   Edit PostPrint Post

My Lukas (21yo appendix QH) has been lame on and off for more than two years, diagnosed with "navicular changes", arthritis and tendon issues. As much as I love him, I'm not up for the cost of an MRI to be more specific on the diagnosis.
He's been on 3 gm of naproxen sodium a day for more than year. My vet did blood work earlier this year when banding some melanomas, and found no worries from his NSAID usage. I buy the drug OTC at Costco, so price is reasonable. At first I ground it up - but the dear boy will eat the blue tabs along with his hay pellets and supplements, so I simply count out 15 a day and toss them in.
Before moving to naproxen, I tried aspirin, which had no effect that I could tell, and a couple of "natural" pain relievers - also no comfort for Lukas.
He's back to work - light riding 3-4 days a week, teaching a couple of young riders how to stay in the saddle when he leaps sideways!
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Robert N. Oglesby DVM
Moderator
Username: dro

Post Number: 22506
Registered: 1-1997
Posted on Monday, Mar 9, 2009 - 8:55 am:   Edit PostPrint Post

Curcumin is under study for a number of potential disease problems in humans and it's effects on horse neutrophils in vitro has been studied. However there are known and proposed side effects. This medication remains unstudied in the horse and cannot be recommended until more is known.

Phenylbutazone is dependent on amount given and weight of the horse and should be dosed accordingly. For more details on this see the article on phenylbutazone.
DrO
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