Floriano had a long history of lameness prior to having been acquired by the current owner approximately four years ago. He was able to achieve soundness with egg bar shoes and vet tec pour pads, as well as a protocol of bute and isoxuprine. He was rideable and sound in lower level dressage work until January 2013. However, he then became acutely and severely lame and was barely weight bearing on the left front. Radiographs taken in March, 2013 were relatively unremarkable, and Floriano received articular injection of hylauranic acid and steroids in the navicular bursa and coffin joint at that time, with moderate, but temporary improvement. He then had an MRI in May, 2013 which showed severe Deep Digital Flexor Tendon (DDFT) damage, including what was most likely a recent lesion, as well as adhesions to the navicular bursa and bone changes consistent with navicular deterioration. The University of Florida Veterinary Center did not consider that Floriano would be a candidate for bursoscopy and/or stem cell therapy, and the recommendation was for complete stall rest, anti-inflammatory medication, and shoeing/ trimming to relieve the strain on the DDFT. He was also treated with low dose therapeutic ultrasound (Ultroz) daily with little response. Corrective shoeing with the Denoix reverse shoe and a degree pad initially provided some improvement, although a second shoeing with the same shoe without degree pad elevating the heel resulted in renewed severity of lameness. Prior to VIVR8 injection, Floriano had been on complete stall rest, received daily phenylbutazone (1 gm), and was wearing a fiberglass wrap with significant heel elevation on the left front foot.
Deep Digital Flexor Tendon (DDFT) damage
Two weeks after VIVR8 injection, the vet and owner both reported dramatic improvement. 1 month post VIVR8 injection, the vet noticed continued improvement. His bute dosage was cut in half. Given the severity of tendon damage, the vet planned to give a second injection to provide continued healing support.
Dramatic improvement! The owner stated “It broke my heart to watch helplessly while this proud and brave horse struggled around his stall even to eat his hay. Floriano is now turned out all day in a small pen, and is doing so well that my vet told me yesterday that she is tempted to give him a somewhat bigger area. It is truly amazing that a horse that was barely able to hobble around his stall for over a year is now able to walk and even trot around a small turnout area with the slightest head nod. Everyone had given up on Floriano, but thanks to Vivregen, we’re reaching my goal of pasture soundness for a safe retirement with a good quality of life! ”