My good husband – who happens to be a very good equine vet and lameness specialist to boot – examined Lance last night. First he palpated both of Lance's hind legs, comparing the right to the left. After determining where the swelling was, he shaved the areas he wanted to ultrasound. (I told him to shave all the white on both hind legs so it would look intentional for our April show – thinking positive thoughts – but he didn't.)
Rick looked at structures high, low and in between. At first glance, nothing looked amiss. He was suspicious about the medial branch of the suspensory – but decided it was just the angle of the probe. He announced that Lance had probably just kicked himself, and pronounced him sound to ride. I said, "You looked at everything?" Bless his heart, Rick put the probe back on Lance's right hind and investigated some more. Sure enough, the medial branch of the suspensory – just above his fetlock – showed some swelling and trauma but thankfully, no tears. There was also some swelling in the high suspensory, just under his hock. The new protocol: at least one shockwave treatment tonight, and no riding or turnout for at least a week, probably two weeks.
While I'm bummed to have my boy sidelined for a bit, I am oh, so thankful that 1) my husband has the expertise and equipment to diagnose the problem, and 2) we caught this early and the prognosis is excellent. Suspensory injuries are almost always cumulative in nature; strain upon strain eventually causes the torn suspensory ligaments we all dread.
So let it rain (it is). While Lance is healing, maybe I will, too. While my frozen shoulder has been improving (thanks to finding a good massage therapist to work on it) my right knee has been bothering me more and more. Now its true origin – sciatica – seems to be revealing itself. Might have the LMT work on that, too. Regardless; our sights are still set on the April show!