Today Stampede got his first shockwave treatment. As I mentioned in my last post, I decided to try something else after our lackluster results with the last set of injections done in April for his kissing spines. Stampede received Extracorporeal Shockwave Therapy (ESWT) using the VersaTron system. I linked their website in case anyone else is interested in reading about the system. I find it very interesting. From the website an explanation of how ESWT works:
Energy is released as a shock wave at tissue interfaces where the density of the tissue or impedance of the sound waves changes. These changes of impedance occur where soft tissue, tendons, ligaments, cartilage, and bone meet. The energy released leads to a cellular reaction that causes the release of various proteins including BMP-2, eNOS, VEGF, and PCNA. Neovascularization takes place, leading to increased blood supply to the treated tissue, resulting in tissue regeneration in tendons, joints, and bone.
Once the vet got set up we first tried the system on Stampede without sleep inducing drugs. He jumped forward and looked alarmed with the first snap of the machine, so we decided to play it safe and sedate him. To me (and most horses in the area) the snapping sound of the shockwave machine was really alarming at first. It’s just SO loud. I was so distracted by all the activity I of course forgot to take pictures or video during the actual treatment, maybe next time when I know what’s coming!
I have to say though, it must feel good because once Stampede was relaxed he seemed to melt (and forget to hold up his own head) the longer it went. The treatment wasn’t long – they just did the area along his spine from behind the wither to the start of his hip, then I had the vet treat his butt a bit since he tends to show some compensation soreness there.
While Stampede was sleepy, I did take advantage and pull his mane since it’s so much easier when his head is down lower, lol. Now that’s all set for the show in a few weeks.
Something I noticed that is strange and must have to do with the extra blood flow. Anywhere he was treated the hair stayed darker after I hosed him off.
Now the beast will get three days off then back to work! Interested to see if this helps my boy!