Raf’s ongoing issues

Bodshi

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Apr 23, 2009
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Thought I’d show you some pictures of Raf’s infection which has been ongoing since November, seems particularly relevant as there is just now a program on tv about antibiotics.

Back in November Raf suddenly developed cellulitis and was prescribed a 5 day course of trimediazine. Although the cellulitis went down pretty quickly his mud fever wouldn’t shift, which is unusual because normally the cream I get from the vets clears it up in a few days.

So, a month later I called out the vet again - got a different one - who said to scrub the scabs off each day with hibiscrub. This is what he ended up looking like, very sore and you can see his leg is swollen. He also became lame at this point. Should also say that the scabs came back every day too, it was more like a crust from the constant weeping than scabs.

BB1263A7-90A5-4D44-800B-B25ECD1FBDED.pngD156DE99-6A54-485E-9719-8F2112F91292.pngAnother vet visit 3 wks later (yet another vet) and she said to stop the washing every day. So this is what happened
EB4283C4-496A-4315-AB77-7F7322D7970B.png

In desperation I texted pictures to the boss vet at the practice who is also the skin specialist and he put Raf on a 14 day course of the same antibiotic. However as there was no improvement, in fact a significant deterioration in his lameness, I called the vet out again, who took a skin scrape, injected for mites, changed the antibiotics to penicillin and increased his Prascend dose (his recent bloods showed his levels were fine but they thought it was worth trying in case the Cushings was implicated in his inability to fight the infection).

Initially we thought there was a clear improvement but then he seemed to go backwards again.

Today the results of the skin scrape came back - two tricky bugs, penicillin resistant E. coli and TMP resistant enterococcus. Could explain why we saw initial improvements with each new antibiotic then a deterioration as I suppose the resistant bug took over again.

So, started today on a new antibiotic - Baytril - and Vet due out again next week. Fingers crossed.
 
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OwnedbyChanter

With out my boys life would be bland
Apr 16, 2009
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Ouchy it looks sore poor thing

I never get they remove scab thing as surely the scab is the body repairing.

I had a arab that got really bad mud fever so bad I stopped turning out in wet winters but rode daily instead. Not great for horse care but stopped the mud fever.

Sorry to here it’s not going great and the last thing I want to do is suggest anything as you are under vet care

Hope he feels better soon
 
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Bodshi

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I never get they remove scab thing as surely the scab is the body repairing.
It seems counter intuitive to me too, but the vet's argument was that the bacteria breeds under the scabs so they have to come off to allow air to get to the skin. Of course the next vet said don't remove, so who knows ...

Also of course, he's excluded on his insurance for mud fever related conditions - I hadn't realised before that mud fever (aka pastern dermatitis) is just a generic term for any infection of the pastern area. His normal mud fever is obviously caused by another organism, one that responds to the mud fever cream I have from the vet. Now I understand why different people swear blind by different mud fever treatments - it just depends what the bug is as to what works and they probably all have different bugs. Goodness knows where he got this infection from - I googled and it looked as though both bacteria are intestinal dwelling ones, the enterococci is seldom seen in horses. It started a few days after we'd been hunting and I've been trying to think if we waded through a shitty field or something, but I can't recall anything like that.
 

Jessey

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Oo that does look horrid, hopefully now you know what you are dealing with you can get on top of it.
Perhaps it was 'normal' MF to start with and he had a chew on it and that's how internal bugs got introduced externally???? just a thought
 
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Kite_Rider

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I was wondering how he was getting on, thank you for the update but my goodness, poor boy! Antibiotic resistance is actually quite scary, I remember the doctors talking about it when my daughter was a baby 27 years ago, I watched the program last night too and it shocks me how basically it all comes down to money or the lack of it for research into new strains of antibiotics.
Hope things improve for him soon Bodshi sending lots of healing vibes.
 
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Trewsers

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Aw that does look sore. Much the same as Chloe a few years ago (who also has Cushings). We were advised to remove the scsbs too but it looked so awful and sore we stopped. We tried lots of things after the course of antibiotics like flamazene and a product recommended here called Aromaheel. Then another vet visit and we bought some turnout anti mud boots, which helped a bit. The crusty awful grey / black bits started improving with pig oil. And then it coincided with a change in weather and seemed to lessen. It never really goes though and all year round we have to be careful and manage it. Poor Raf, I so hope the antibiotics will work. To make him lame it must be so sore. And your vet bills:eek:lots of healing vibes x
 
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diplomaticandtactful

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I found that Barrier hygiene hoof to heel cream really helped with Molly's mud fever. It is very greasy and full of natural cleansers, it softens the scabs and the skin comes back underneath it really nicely. It also seems to help them not get sore, as the scabs soften and fall off really easily, so you don't get into the syndrome where they won't let you touch as they expect it to hurt. It might be worth a go with it, you can use it as a barrier cream to keep their legs clean. I tended to use it in the morning, then when she came in at night I put on leggings to dry the legs off, the leggings got greasy and needed washing, but it seemed to clear it up really well.
 
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chunky monkey

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I'm not convinced that hibiscrub is the way to go, as I think it kills the good bacteria too.
I would pig oil to loosen the scabs but not pull them off. Just let nature take its course.
Fingers crossed you are getting on top of the infection.
 
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Bodshi

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Thanks everyone. I wonder if he has had a chew - never seen him doing anything like that but it doesn’t mean he hasn’t.

@Kite_Rider I only half saw the program but it is scary isn’t it. 20 years to bring a new drug to market, no wonder the drug companies don’t want to put the resource into developing them.

@Trewsers I actually thought of you managing Chloe’s mud fever year round when I was going through the possible scenarios in my head. I just hope we can get on top of the infection enough to make it manageable. When he’s feeling sore he isn’t just lame, he’s not wanting to move at all and has to be practically dragged out of his box. Yet a couple of days later he can be flying round the school like there’s never been anything wrong with him. He is a bit of a princess when he’s not well though :p

Thanks for the tip @diplomaticandtactful. I’m not going to do anything other than what the vet advises for the moment but if he gets better I will want to look at ways to protect his legs. He hasn’t been turned out since November due to the infection, he has to go in the indoor school instead, so mud isn’t a problem at the moment.

@chunky monkey I had wondered about using pig oil, not now because I’m following the vet’s instructions, but maybe when this is all over. I haven’t hibiscrubbed for weeks now, but to be honest the infection seemed to spread after I stopped hibiscrubbing and removing the scabs, although it was less sore. The problem with the scabs is that they come straight back after they’ve been removed - I don’t think any of the vets believed that I was following instructions and removing the scabs until the last one who did a skin scraping and said he then realised that the scabs were more of a crusty extrusion than a real scab. I’m just leaving them now, unless any rub off when I apply his cream, but they continue to spread :confused:
 
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Trewsers

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Thanks everyone. I wonder if he has had a chew - never seen him doing anything like that but it doesn’t mean he hasn’t.

@Kite_Rider I only half saw the program but it is scary isn’t it. 20 years to bring a new drug to market, no wonder the drug companies don’t want to put the resource into developing them.

@Trewsers I actually thought of you managing Chloe’s mud fever year round when I was going through the possible scenarios in my head. I just hope we can get on top of the infection enough to make it manageable. When he’s feeling sore he isn’t just lame, he’s not wanting to move at all and has to be practically dragged out of his box. Yet a couple of days later he can be flying round the school like there’s never been anything wrong with him. He is a bit of a princess when he’s not well though :p

Thanks for the tip @diplomaticandtactful. I’m not going to do anything other than what the vet advises for the moment but if he gets better I will want to look at ways to protect his legs. He hasn’t been turned out since November due to the infection, he has to go in the indoor school instead, so mud isn’t a problem at the moment.

@chunky monkey I had wondered about using pig oil, not now because I’m following the vet’s instructions, but maybe when this is all over. I haven’t hibiscrubbed for weeks now, but to be honest the infection seemed to spread after I stopped hibiscrubbing and removing the scabs, although it was less sore. The problem with the scabs is that they come straight back after they’ve been removed - I don’t think any of the vets believed that I was following instructions and removing the scabs until the last one who did a skin scraping and said he then realised that the scabs were more of a crusty extrusion than a real scab. I’m just leaving them now, unless any rub off when I apply his cream, but they continue to spread :confused:

That must be so painful if he really doesn't want to move even. Chloe does get it pretty bad from time to time, but touch wood, mostly she still wants to go out and about. Though (and I am probably reading far too much into this) when the mud in the gate way is at it's worst and it is raining she will not go out - only onto the yard. Maybe she has more sense?? Or maybe she just doesn't fancy wet cold legs......but either way I am glad as it does make it easier for me, means I don't have to get shut of mud before treating, I can generally apply the oil or itchgone cream right on top.
 
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diplomaticandtactful

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Molly used to get bad mud fever being white legged. I found the Barrier Hygiene Hoof to Heel really effective, you lather it on, leave it and it softens the scabs so they just fall off to reveal nice clean new skin underneath. It also acts as a good barrier if out in the field. It is very greasy. I found once the mud fever healed up, if I used thermatex wraps over night if they had wet legs it dried the legs really quickly and kept them warm and dry, breaking the cycle of moist skin and bacteria
 
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Bodshi

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How is RAF doing now @Bodshi ?
He's so-so, thanks for asking. Still got the same two bugs (e-coli and enterococci) as confirmed by the latest skin scraping and as he has been pumped full of antibiotics which haven't worked, he was put on a course of steroids which he's just finished, also which didn't work. I've now started him on a topical steroid cream, which at least seems to reduce the inflammation of the skin, although I'm not sure if it's having any effect on the scabs. I just have to manage it best I can and take each day as it comes. He looks and feels fine in himself most days, it's just that he's obviously very sore sometimes and that can make him lame. I still think our best hope is for Dr Green to make an appearance!

Thanks @diplomaticandtactful - I'm still following the vet advice (not that it's doing much good, but I think they're as stumped as anyone!) Trying things one thing at a time ... Raf gets mud fever every winter but the cream I get from the vets normally does the trick, like the stuff you use, it softens up the scabs and they come off. This time though it's not just scabs, his skin is inflamed and really angry looking. The mud fever cream helps sooth it but it's not clearing it up.
 
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diplomaticandtactful

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I found the BH stuff was really good at healing skin, as it is full of natural oils and seemed to reduce the inflammation and pain. I use their thrush for sheep on the horses and find it is very good at dealing with any thrush

I am sorry he is having such a lot of bother, very worrying for you.
 
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