Mörkö had been lame on and off for months. He had been examined many times but nothing was found. I felt like the doctor we kept seeing time after time got bored with us.

It took us months and three doctors to figure out what was wrong. Like so many times before my luck didn't disappoint me this time either. The condition was found so far advanced it could be seen in xray..

Osteomyelitis. Not uncommon but one usually diagnosed after the horse has been put down. Finding information about the condition was also a struggle. This is the reality in Finland atleast.

For Mörkö the treatment was Osphos injections, cortisone and time. What ever time meant..

The infection was located to a lower part of left hind tibia. Cortisone was injected to the fetlock joint. All we could do was hope for improvement. If the situation didn't improve with medication and rest our choices were slim. Then again, Vipsu has proven to survive all things impossible time after time. There's always hope..

Mörkö got the "diagnosis" based on xray. Usually this is not enough to be sure and an MRI is recommended. We were told the finding strongly support the diagnosis since the finding is clear and condition advanced enough to be seen in xray. Usually when a horse with similar finding has an MRI or is put down and the leg examined, the result is always osteomyelitis.

Often the cause is some kind of injury. With foals infection in other part of the body can spread and enter the bone. Common symptoms include lameness (sometimes on off ), pain, hotness and swelling of a limb, sometimes fever. Horse can be reluctant to put weight on the foot or it rests the leg more than usual.

I have no idea how Mörkö got osteomyelitis. I wish we found it sooner. Prognosis is related to how soon the condition is found and treatment started. We lost months. I'm glad Mörkö got Osphos as precaution when it was ovious something was wrong but no one knew what.

Osteomyelitis doesn't need to be a death sentence but it is tricky to treat.

I was relieved when the diagnosis came even if it meant our time together was about to be over. It was also a shock. I cried my eyes out. The fighter inside me was losing faith. I kept hoping Mörkö was stronger than me.

This was the situation almost six months ago. Since then the infected area has shrunken a bit but it is still there.

- J

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Thanks for your toughts!