Relationship between saddle pressure measurements and clinical signs of saddle soreness at the withers
Article first published online: 8 NOV 2010
© 2010 EVJ Ltd
Equine Veterinary Journal
Special Issue: Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Equine Exercise Physiology
Volume 42, Issue Supplement s38, pages 650–653, November 2010
How to Cite
Von PEINEN, K., WIESTNER, T., Von RECHENBERG, B. and WEISHAUPT, M. A. (2010), Relationship between saddle pressure measurements and clinical signs of saddle soreness at the withers. Equine Veterinary Journal, 42: 650–653. doi: 10.1111/j.2042-3306.2010.00191.x
- Issue published online: 8 NOV 2010
- Article first published online: 8 NOV 2010
- [Paper received for publication 11.01.10; Accepted 01.06.10]
- saddle sore;
- saddle pressure measurement;
- dry spots
Reasons for performing the study: Similar to human decubitus ulcers, local high pressure points from ill-fitting saddles induce perfusion disturbances of different degrees resulting in tissue hypoxia and alteration in sweat production.
Objective: To relate the different clinical manifestations of saddle sores to the magnitude of saddle pressures at the location of the withers.
Methods: Sixteen horses with dry spots after exercise (Group A) and 7 cases presented with acute clinical signs of saddle pressure in the withers area (Group B) were compared with a control group of 16 sound horses with well fitting saddles (Group C). All horses underwent a saddle pressure measurement at walk, trot and canter. Mean and maximal pressures in the area of interest were compared between groups within each gait.
Results: Mean pressures differed significantly between groups in all 3 gaits. Maximal pressure differed between groups at trot; at walk and canter, however, the only significant difference was between Group C and Groups A and B, respectively, (P>0.05). Mean and maximal pressures at walk in Group A were 15.3 and 30.6 kPa, in Group B 24.0 and 38.9 kPa and in Group C 7.8 and 13.4 kPa, respectively; at trot in Group A 18.1 and 43.4 kPa, in Group B 29.7 and 53.3 kPa and in Group C 9.8 and 21.0 kPa, respectively; and at canter in Group A 21.4 and 48.9 kPa, in Group B 28.6 and 56.0 kPa and in Group C 10.9 and 24.7 kPa, respectively.
Conclusion: The study shows that there is a distinguishable difference between the 3 groups regarding the mean pressure value, in all gaits.