Applying Human Tendon Rehab Techniques to Horses
It’s not unusual for equine researchers and veterinarians to take a page from human medicine when it comes to treating challenging conditions in horses. Some of the tendon-healing philosophies and therapies doctors use in human patients might apply to equine ones, as well.
During the 2018 British Equine Veterinary Association Congress, held Sept. 12-15 in Birmingham, U.K., Seth O’Neill, PhD, MSc, PGCE, HE, MCSP, MMACP, of the University of Leicester’s College of Life Sciences, in the U.K., discussed how tendon rehab techniques in humans might transfer to horses. O’Neill works with “a mixed bag” of elite and nonelite human athletes.
He described tendinopathy (tendon injury) as “an imbalance in the rate of wear and repair.” While some stress on a tendon during training is good—the transient changes that occur after exercise cause the tendon to adapt and become more resilient—overstress can cause it to degrade. The resulting structural changes to the tendon then put it at risk of failing catastrophically during normal loading, he
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