10/29/12 – Jessie said about 80% of the last skin grafts took!!! YOOOHOOO!!! Tomorrow, Northstar will receive about 80 or 90 more plug type grafts.
10/25/12 – “Northstar is healing well. Last week we began the long process of skin grafts and cell-based therapy. True to form, Northstar did really well for both procedures. We harvested skin from his chest in small 8mm diameter grafts and embedded them into two areas on his left and right neck. Time will tell how well these grafts take, but, preliminary assessment looks good where most of them have stayed
His attitude has improved and we have started him on some medications that help with nerve pain as there is a degree of increased sensitivity over the healing tissues as the nerves regenerate. This week, Northstar will have a quiet and restful time where routine bandage changes and cleaning will be the focus as well as lots of treats, cuddles and attention.
He is doing so well that we are having to cut back on the treats a little as he is putting on weight; a little too much :)
Jessie and Bob both visited and spent time during the cleaning yesterday and were impressed at the progress he is making. The next round of skin grafts will likely occur next week and continue every other week or so until we have reached our limits of available donor tissue or we are happy that he has adequate coverage.
Again, we are so thankful to all the support the world over for the well wishes, compassion and following of this case. Northstar is a fighter and continues to enamor those who hear about him and his plight.”
BSc BVMS MS DACVIM DACVECC
10/20/12: Jessie called and had talked to Northstar’s vet today. She said they put about 70 “plug” type grafts and that Northstar tolerated the procedure well. Because the nerve endings are growing, Northstar has increased feeling and is more likely to want to roll now. He is doing very well, even gaining weight! He is acting much more like a six year old horse with each passing day!
NEWS ARTICLE FROM DVM MAGAZINE
|Oct 25, 2012
By: Julie Scheidegger
Northstar, a 6-year-old American paint horse that was badly burned in August in Crawford County, Pa., is healing well, says Dr. Samuel Hurcombe, DVM, BSc, BVMS, MS, DACVIM, ACVECC, assistant professor of equine emergency and critical care at the Galbreath Equine Center at The Ohio State University. It is believed that the horse was deliberately doused in an unknown accelerant and set on fire, sustaining first-, second- and third-degree burns to approximately 40 percent of his body.
Shortly after Northstar arrived at OSU, Hurcombe said Northstar’s burns would take at least a month of healing before infection was under control and graft surgery could even be considered. Despite the severity of the horse’s injuries, Hurcombe was cautiously optimistic about how Northstar was progressing. “Northstar is bright and interactive with people and his pain is manageable, but he has a long way to go to recovery,” he says.
Hurcombe reports that last week the horse began the long process of skin grafts and cell-based therapy. “True to form, Northstar did really well for both procedures,” Hurcombe said in an e-mail to DVM Newsmagazine. “We harvested skin from his chest in small 8-mm-diameter grafts and embedded them into two areas on his left and right neck.”
He says time will tell on how well the grafts take, but preliminary assessments look good. Pain management will be a priority as Northstar experiences increased sensitivity over the healing tissues as the nerves regenerate. “This week, Northstar will have a quiet and restful time where routine bandage changes and cleaning will be the focus as well as lots of treats, cuddles and attention,” Hurcombe says.
Northstar is getting so much attention and love from those caring for him that Hurcombe is cutting back on the treats–the horse is putting on a little too much weight. The staff at Galbreath Equine Center is encouraged that the horse’s attitude seems to be improving as they continue his long healing process.
“The next round of skin grafts will likely occur next week and continue every other week or so until we have reached our limits of available donor tissue or we are happy that he has adequate coverage,” Hurcombe says.
REMEMBER, you can keep up with his progress via his website.
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