Friday, April 20, 2007

Healing Chronic Illness

We've had lots of 'interesting' experiences over the winter with Lutine's health. It started in the Autumn. Lutine went lame again after staying out on the green grass for too long in the autumn and, just as in May, this lameness became an abscess which took a couple of weeks to resolve. This time the vet came out and drained the abscess, leaving a hole in her sole which in itself was a bit of a problem. But gradually that went away and then the next thing was that she started with lymphangitis again. I think it was in one front leg and one hind leg on the same time - called the vet and she was given 3 days of antibiotics and Bute, which seemed to do the trick and the lymphangitis went away. Then we had two successive flare ups the two following months. In the meantime, Lutine also developed Uveitis, a chronic eye inflammation and was therefore on medication for that too. I could see the awful results in her feet. Within weeks of the Bute, antiobiotics and other anti inflammatories, she had a red founder line on all four feet, ridges in the hoof walls and bruised soles. This was the first time she'd had this sign come back since I had her so it kind of indicates to me that a l0t of her previous medical treatment was contributing to her overall chronic problems.

I decided in January that I would buy a Photonic Therapy kit for the horses. This is basically a form of acupuncture that uses light to stimulate the points rather than needles, so I could use it to support the healing of any problems (humans and other animals too) . In January, Lutine started again with swollen pasterns and I knew that the lymphangitis was starting again. I REALLY didn't want to give her more Bute and antibiotics - they were causing problems with her feet and the darned problem was just coming back time after time. So I started using the Photonic torch on her every 12 hours and within three days the problem had gone away again. I then started her on Lymph Blend from Global Herbs ( to see if we could ward this thing off for the future. The lymphangitis tried to surface again another couple of times over the coming three months but each time, by increasing Lutine's Lymph Blend dosage and by giving her photonic therapy, the swelling went away. The second time it happened, it went away within 12 hours.

The next thing that happened was that, just as it seemed her eyes were healing from the uveitis, she decided to rub them on the hay bale and give herself corneal ulcers. This resulted in several weeks of antiobiotic eye drops and finally, I used some chinese herbs to get rid of the final bit of corneal oedema that was left over.

Since the end of Winter, Lutine's not had more attacks of lymphangitis but then, in the last few weeks, some mud fever erupted on her hind legs. Now, when she started with the lymphangitis, I checked her thoroughly for problems like mud fever or for cuts or scratches that could be triggering the problem and I couldn't find any. So we are now dealing with the scabs from the mud fever - it's quite mild and is healing nicely just with daily application of Sudocrem.

Finally, as the weather came better and the ground dried up, we started doing some more work, first on the lunge line and now long lining. After about a week, Lutine went through a muscle crisis of some sort - at first I thought she'd 'tied up' (exertional rhabdomyolisis) but the vet took a blood test and the results came back normal for the muscle enzyme indicators for tying up. The vet also ran a full blood panel, which came back as normal. Anyway, since then we changed over to long lining rather than lunging so she's now working on straight lines rather than circles, which is less strain on her muscles and joints to start with. I also keep supporting her with the photonic therapy and she's just doing wonderfully now. I will post updated photos and videos soon.

It's interesting though because I read an article about healing for chronic problems and apparently, these healing crises are quite common. The article (which I can't now find again but when I do, I'll post a link) said that the progress usually goes from the inside out (e.g. bone problems followed by muscle problems followed by skin problems) and from the top to bottom (e.g. a shoulder problem followed by a hoof problem). Certainly, my experience with Lutine has followed this for the most part.

At the moment, she'd doing brilliantly, looking absolutely glorious and I can't wait to get some photos and vidoes of her up.


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