Unresponsive laminitis in need of immediate improvement:
Deep digital flexor tenotomy is considered to be a salvage procedure for unresponsive cases with massive laminar damage or chronic laminitis. The deep digital flexor tendon runs down the back of the horse’s leg and attaches to the back of the coffin bone. By transecting the deep digital flexor tendon near the mid-cannon bone region, pressure from the pull of the tendon on the coffin bone is relieved. This transection also removes one of the main forces responsible for rotation of the coffin bone in laminitis.
The purpose of this procedure is to improve blood flow to the foot, alleviate pain, halt disease progressions and re-establish the proper function/position of the coffin bone. The deep digital flexor tenotomy procedure along with re-alignment shoeing has proven to be a valuable treatment option for rehabilitating severe laminitic cases. Many horses that are facing euthanasia when they come in return home to live a life comfortably as a pleasure horse.
This procedure is quick and minimally invasive. Typically, the horse remains standing for the procedure while under local anesthesia.