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Forskningsartikel2013Vetenskapligt granskadÖppen tillgång

Effect of lungeing on head and pelvic movement asymmetry in horses with induced lameness

Rhodin M, Pfau T, Roepstorff L, Egenvall A


Lungeing is an important part of lameness examinations, since the circular path enforced during lungeing is thought to accentuate low grade lameness. However, during lungeing the movement of sound horses becomes naturally asymmetric, which may mimic lameness. Also, compensatory movements in the opposite half of the body may mimic lameness. The aim of this study was to objectively study the presence of circle-dependent and compensatory movement asymmetries in horses with induced lameness. Ten horses were trotted in a straight line and lunged in both directions on a hard surface. Lameness was induced (reversible hoof pressure) in each limb, one at a time, in random order. Vertical head and pelvic movements were measured with body-mounted, uni-axial accelerometers. Differences between maximum and minimum height observed during/after left and right stance phases for the head (HDmax, HDmin) and pelvis (PDmax, PDmin) were measured. Mixed models were constructed to study the effect of lungeing direction and induction, and to quantify secondary compensatory asymmetry mechanisms in the forelimbs and hind limbs. Head and pelvic movement symmetries were affected by lungeing. Minimum pelvic height difference (PDmin) changed markedly, increasing significantly during lungeing, giving the impression of inner hind limb lameness. Primary hind limb lameness induced compensatory head movement, which mimicked an ipsilateral forelimb lameness of almost equal magnitude to the primary hind limb lameness. This could contribute to difficulty in correctly detecting hind limb lameness. Induced forelimb lameness caused both a compensatory contralateral (change in PDmax) and an ipsilateral (change in PDmin) hind limb asymmetry, potentially mimicking hind limb lameness, but of smaller magnitude. Both circle-dependent and compensatory movement mechanisms must be taken into account when evaluating lameness. (C) 2013 Elsevier Ltd.


Equine; Induced lameness; Lungeing

Publicerad i

Veterinary Journal
2013, Volym: 198, sidor: E39-E45