Lameness is a challenge for many equine clinicians and is one of the problems seen frequently in practice. Inertial sensors offer an unbiased assessment of a horse’s gait. This webinar examines different systems, their uses and their limitations. 

The Learning Objectives are: 

  • Review of current systems 
  • How do they work? 
  • What are they good for? 
  • What is their limitation? 
  • Should I buy a system? 

Dr Matthew begins the webinar by explaining how lameness is defined and why several studies have suggested redefining it. Lameness is not a disease as such, but a sign of different conditions. It has even been suggested that it does not necessarily dictate pathology, but simply represents how a horse moves.

The inertial sensors measure different factors by collecting data in real time as the horse moves. This data is then fed into a processor where it is analysed by an algorithm, which generates a report for the veterinarian to interpret. Some systems can even interpret these results and quantify the patient’s asymmetry.

Dr Matthew explains the indicators of forelimb and hindlimb lameness.  Within the forelimbs, he includes head nod caused by shifting the weight towards the hindquarters, louder sound in the opposite limb and easier to see when the horse is going toward you. What we can see in a hindlimb lameness is hip hike, it looks better when the horse moves away from you, the lame side moves through a greater range of motion, among others. Each is explained by Dr Matthew during the webinar. 

The inertial sensors calculate the head and pelvic height differences and their acceleration, giving lameness results if they exist.  This is a modern and innovative process that can be used anywhere as long as there are suitable facilities, and you only need a tablet or a computer to see the results.  Dr Matthew explains the whole process in detail, from how the sensors are placed, to how to interpret the results 

The webinar also details different types of lameness, such as primary lameness and compensatory lameness, including how a vet can differentiate between them. The characteristics and patterns are explained, and the “law of sides” is also touched upon.

This webinar is very interesting, where Dr Matthew gives his honest opinion and explains the system and its limitations very well. 

Dr Matthew Sinovich

Matthew qualified from the University of Pretoria, Onderstepoort, in 2005. In 2006 he joined Witbos Vet hospital in Johannesburg as an equine assistant. Here he acted as both part of the ambulatory team and as surgical assistant in the referral hospital. During this time, he obtained an honor’s degree in equine surgery from the University of Pretoria and a diploma in equine surgery from the University of Sydney. His surgical interests brought him to the University of Liverpool in 2015, where he undertook a rotating clinical equine internship followed by a residency in equine surgery. After completing his residency and master’s degree, Matthew stayed on at Leahurst as a Lecturer in Equine Surgery. In 2020 started a job as a surgeon at the Liphook Equine Hospital where hi professional interests include all aspects of equine surgery, lameness investigation and diagnostic imaging. He has broad research interest in both orthopaedic and soft tissue surgery and is currently working towards becoming a diplomat of the European College of Veterinary Surgeons.