Objective—To evaluate the efficacy of tiludronate for the treatment of horses with signs of pain associated with lesions of the thoracolumbar vertebral column.
Animals—29 horses with clinical manifestations of pain associated with lesions of the thoracolumbar vertebral column and abnormal radiographic findings indicative of osteoarthritis of the articular processes–synovial intervertebral joints.
Procedures—Horses were initially examined in accordance with a standardized protocol, which included radiographic, ultrasonographic, and scintigraphic examinations. Fifteen horses were randomly assigned to receive tiludronate (1 mg/kg, IV, as a slow-rate infusion), and 14 horses received a control substance (day 0). Horses were monitored for the subsequent 120 days. Clinical evaluations were performed on days 60 and 120. Horses that had no evidence of clinical improvement on day 60 were administered tiludronate. Statistical analyses were performed to compare efficacy at day 60, improvement of dorsal flexibility at day 120, and dorsal flexibility before and 60 days after administration of tiludronate.
Results—Horses treated with tiludronate had significant improvement in dorsal flexibility between days 0 and 60, compared with control horses. Clinical improvement in dorsal flexibility was still evident at day 120. The percentage of positive responses was higher in the tiludronate group at 60 days.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Tiludronate had efficacy in the treatment of horses with signs of pain induced by osteoarticular lesions of the thoracolumbar vertebral column, causing a significant improvement in dorsal flexibility. Tiludronate may offer a treatment option for the management of horses with intervertebral lesions and the associated pain.