Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Motion sensors detect horse lameness earlier than veterinarians

Date:
July 3, 2012
Source:
University of Missouri-Columbia
Summary:
Equine veterinarians have developed a way to detect lameness using a motion detection system called the "Lameness Locator." Now, researchers have found that the Lameness Locator can detect lameness earlier than veterinarians using the traditional method of a subjective eye test.

Equine veterinarians have developed a way to detect lameness using a motion detection system called the "Lameness Locator."
Credit: Image courtesy of University of Missouri-Columbia

The most common ailment to affect a horse is lameness. A University of Missouri equine veterinarian has developed a way to detect this problem using a motion detection system called the "Lameness Locator." Now, Kevin Keegan, a professor of equine surgery in the College of Veterinary Medicine at MU, has found that his Lameness Locator can detect lameness earlier than veterinarians using the traditional method of a subjective eye test.

The Lameness Locator, which is now in commercial use, places small sensors on the horse's head, right front limb and croup, near the tail. The sensors monitor and record the horse's torso movement while the horse is trotting. The recorded information is then transferred to a computer or mobile device and compared against databases recorded from the movement of healthy horses and other lame horses. The computer is then able to diagnose whether or not the horse is lame.

In a new study published in the Equine Veterinary Journal, Keegan and co-author Meghan McCracken, an equine surgery resident at MU, put special adjustable shoes on horses that temporarily induced symptoms of lameness. The horses were then monitored by the Lameness Locator as well as by a number of veterinarians using any lameness testing methods they wished. If no lameness was detected by either the veterinarians or the Lameness Locator, the special shoes were adjusted slightly to increase the symptoms of lameness. This process was repeated until both the Lameness Locator and the participating veterinarians properly identified in which leg of the horse the lameness was occurring. Keegan and McCracken found that the Lameness Locator was able to correctly identify lameness earlier than veterinarians using subjective eye test methods more than 58 percent of the time and more than 67 percent of the time when the lameness occurred in the hind legs of the horse. Keegan attributes this to the sensors' high sensitivity levels.

"There are two reasons why the Lameness Locator is better than the naked eye," Keegan said. "It samples motion at a higher frequency beyond the capability of the human eye and it removes the bias that frequently accompanies human subjective evaluation."

Because equine lameness may begin subtly and can range from a simple mild problem affecting a single limb to a more complicated one affecting multiple limbs, veterinarians and horse owners know that early detection is the key to successful outcomes.

"If veterinarians can detect lameness earlier, before it gets too bad, it makes treatment much easier," Keegan said. "Lameness often goes undetected or undiagnosed entirely, which can cause owners to retire horses earlier than needed, simply because they cannot figure out why the horses are unhealthy. The Lameness Locator should be able to help with that as well."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Missouri-Columbia. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. M. J. Mccracken, J. Kramer, K. G. Keegan, M. Lopes, D. A. Wilson, S. K. Reed, A. Lacarrubba, M. Rasch. Comparison of an inertial sensor system of lameness quantification with subjective lameness evaluation. Equine Veterinary Journal, 2012; DOI: 10.1111/j.2042-3306.2012.00571.x

Cite This Page:

University of Missouri-Columbia. "Motion sensors detect horse lameness earlier than veterinarians." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 July 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120703162620.htm>.
University of Missouri-Columbia. (2012, July 3). Motion sensors detect horse lameness earlier than veterinarians. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 18, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120703162620.htm
University of Missouri-Columbia. "Motion sensors detect horse lameness earlier than veterinarians." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/07/120703162620.htm (accessed September 18, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Chimp Violence Study Renews Debate On Why They Kill

Chimp Violence Study Renews Debate On Why They Kill

Newsy (Sep. 17, 2014) The study weighs in on a debate over whether chimps are naturally violent or become that way due to human interference in the environment. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

Some Tobacco Farmers Thrive Amid Challenges

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) The South's tobacco country is surviving, and even thriving in some cases, as demand overseas keeps growers in the fields of one of America's oldest cash crops. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists Given Rare Glimpse of 350-Kilo Colossal Squid

Scientists Given Rare Glimpse of 350-Kilo Colossal Squid

AFP (Sep. 16, 2014) Scientists say a female colossal squid weighing an estimated 350 kilograms (770 lbs) and thought to be only the second intact specimen ever found was carrying eggs when discovered in the Antarctic. Duration: 00:47 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

Raw: Scientists Examine Colossal Squid

AP (Sep. 16, 2014) Squid experts in New Zealand thawed and examined an unusual catch on Tuesday: a colossal squid. It was captured in Antarctica's remote Ross Sea in December last year and has been frozen for eight months. (Sept. 16) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins