The sacrum forms the base of the horse's spinal column. Pain in this area is commonly associated with the sacroiliac joint, which connects the spinal column with the pelvis. Symptoms of pain include changes in gait and behaviour.
Symptoms of sacroiliac pain typically include local sensitivity to touch and pressure, shortened stride and refusal to turn quickly or jump, according to MyHorse.com. You may notice an asymmetrical appearance to the hips, with one lower than the other. This is sometimes called hunter's bump.
Severe pain can cause a horse to go lame, according to Burlington Equine Veterinary Services. Lameness usually involves a bone fracture or damage or injury to ligaments. Sacral problems may be the cause if you can rule out dysfunction in the leg or foot.
Diagnosis may include X-ray, bone scan, ultrasound or a rectal examination to check for swelling and sensitivity. Recovery ranges from six weeks to many months, depending on severity of the problem and how early it is detected.
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