Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Dusty’s Shock Wave Treatment

" Was that really necessary "
Our vet was here this morning to administer Dusty’s shock wave treatment.  I did ask a few questions and now understand a little better how it works.  He actually had a brochure from the company whose machine he was using.  If you’re interested in this sort of treatment for one of your horses the company is www.PulseVet.com.  The technical term:  VersaTron, Non-Invasive Regenerative Extracorporeal Shock Wave technology (ESWT).

The following is directly from the brochure addressing frequently asked questions. I’m only taking a sampling otherwise this would be too long.

VersaTron (ESWT) What is it?
  • ESWT is a non-invasive, high-intensity pressure wave regenerative medicine treatment.  It helps the body in relieving pain, speeding healing and improving quality of healing.
  • “Shock Wave” is a physics term to describe a rapid increase in pressure, such as the energy from an explosion or thunder resulting from lightening.  “Shock wave” does not refer to electrical shock.
  • VersaTron ESWT is a much higher energy and can penetrate to deeper areas than many other types of energy modalities.

How does it work?
  • ESWT provides a high energy, focused, pressure wave that causes a biological response in treated tissue, which will stimulate and accelerate the healing process.  The pressure wave acts as a mechanical force at the cellular level causing various biological reactions including the release of proteins associated with decreased inflammation and increased blood vessel formation.  ESWT has also been demonstrated to recruit stem cells, and positively regulate inflammatory proteins associated with osteoarthritis.

There is much more in the brochure about the different uses this treatment is helpful with such as:  tendon and ligament injuries, wound healing, bone healing and degenerative joint disease.  It can be used with other treatments, so it might be worth asking your vet.  Anticipated results can be seen with 1-3 treatments.  It is important to note that it takes time for the biological responses to take place and healing is seen over a period of time, not immediately.  If it works I’m willing to wait. 

In the following pictures you can see that Dusty’s legs are shaved; that was from the ultrasound.  They disinfected the area to be treated, and then put gel on it and did the shock wave treatment.  I can say that it’s pretty loud and sounds almost like a controlled banging or hammering.  She was sedated for this and didn’t mind it a bit she was resting her head on my shoulder and was half asleep through the whole procedure.  When she was done she was led to her stall where she stayed for an hour or so and then she was allowed to go out with the boys for the afternoon.  Mellon was pacing the fence the whole time and calling for her.  I thought it was nice of the boys to stay in the catch pen all morning and wait for her—everyone except Blue, of course.  He was down in the second paddock doing his own thing as usual.  Probably glad it wasn’t him!

Dusty has two more treatments, two weeks apart.  Fingers crossed that this will heal her last stubborn suspensory branches and she’ll be feeling much better soon.  I’m guessing she’s feeling slightly betrayed today.  I kept her in and gave her quite a thorough grooming today with lots of treats.  Once the vet arrived I’m sure I got the stink eye.  Sorry, little girl, but it’s for your own good.  How many times have you heard that from your mother and really hated it!

Until next time
Quote for Today
The horse through all its trials has preserved the sweetness of paradise in its blood.
    - Johannes Jensen

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