A complex topic I studied a few years ago, and that I have simplified to make it easier to understand
WHAT IS IT?
The spinal cord becomes compressed because of a narrowing or instability affecting one or more vertebrae which occurs between 18 & 24 months from C3 to C5. Why C3/C4? There is a large mobility and there is a curvature inversion. This may be the centre of dysfunction in utero in the fetal position.
HORSES AT RISK
Larger, faster-growing individuals, too much vitamin, nutritional imbalances. Areas with very calcic grounds.
Ataxia, lack of coordination.
DIFFERENT DIAGNOSIS – WHAT COULD IT BE?
- Cervical vertebrae fracture linked to a hematoma + oedema, which generates spinal compression and therefore stenosis.
- Lumbar fracture with hematoma + oedema
- Cervical vertebrae sprain, distension of ligaments and tendons, laxity of the dorsal longitudinal ligament and lesions of the synovial membrane.
- Lumbar vertebrae sprain see above
- Cervical vertebrae subluxation, laxity of the dorsal longitudinal ligament, lesions of the synovial membrane and joint capsule (visible with X-Ray).
- Neurovascular, visceral or articular osteopathic dysfunction (erythropoiesis: process which produces red blood cells-> blood quality).
- Bad position in utero
- Embryonic development
- Degenerative arthritis
- Hematoma oedema
- Lead or zinc poisoning
- Plant poisoning
- Deficiency in utero or at foal stage, we can also think about osteopathic dysfunction of the mare (trauma? transport?)
- Hormonal dysfunction because of osteopathic dysfunction
GENERAL MECHANISM OF COMPRESSION OF THE SPINAL CORD IN STATIC AND DYNAMIC
Static compression, therefore, decrease in innervation and vascularization. A decrease in oxygen and nutrients via the vertebral artery and a decrease in tissue quality. Toxic waste accumulates. Predisposition to vertebrae subluxation confused with Wobbler. There is an alteration of the joint which causes a modified nervous message and therefore a decrease in the support of the joint and failure of the innervation.
Dynamic compression; Appears only in certain positions caused by the movement. Compression is not continuous.
Manual Therapy, exercises and stretching are really important during rehab period.