As the name suggests navicular disease affects the navicular bone which in horses is located in the foot. Navicular syndrome has been thought to be arthritic in nature and one of the causes of this disease thought to be pressure in the foot. Navicular disease is common among horses and because they are on their feet all the time, it causes lots of pain and even lameness. There hasn’t been much success in treatment for Navicular Disease and horses end up being lame which might mean that they would be put down.
As classical treatments have been found to be non-responsive, there was need to find something that actually works. Gallium Nitrate has shown promise as it has been found to be anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial and anti-bone-resorptive. There have been clinical trials on the same to find out if it actually works. The results have been promising because almost 60% of the horses with navicular disease that were part of the trial showed positive results. Some of them showed soundness while others improved a lot in the time they took Gallium Nitrate.
Even though navicular bone lameness is very common, the exact cause of this disease has not been understood. Treatments have always included rest, anti-inflammatory drugs and hyaluronic acid. This has only helped a little but when the cases are severe these horses have had to be euthanized which is very unfortunate both for the horse owners and the horses themselves.
The aim of the study conducted was to find out what effect gallium nitrate would have on navicular bone lameness in horses within one two-week treatment. Before the treatment was undertaken, the horse owners were informed of the potential risks and side effects of the treatment so that they would make an informed choice on whether to have their horses on the clinical study or not. Gallium Nitrate has also been used in humans to treat different bone related disorders and has proven to be helpful.
During the course of the treatment, the horse owners were required to keep pain scores on every day their horses were on treatment. This helped show how fast the horses were responding to the treatment. The horse owners also did soundness observation everyday and that was also written on a diary to keep score. To ensure that the horses got enough time to heal, they were excluded from work which allowed their bodies to actually heal.
The results of the study showed that gallium nitrate just might have curative abilities because for most of the horses, their pain scores after stopping the treatment were low. This showed that they were not only keeping the pain off but also treating the lameness. This is very promising because classical treatments required that the horses remain in treatment to get the benefits. They only kept the pain away when the treatment was in use and once they stopped, pain came back.
This is really good news for horse owners because you can t finally treat your horse and navicular disease doesn’t have to be a a death sentence for your horse anymore. Gallium Nitrate is what you should go for to give your horse a good chance of healing and getting their life back.