I’m hesitant to make any statements about the inevitable end of the leg hole saga, but I was quite surprised by the sudden and marked improvement in the wound this week. From the surgery date until the first of November (about seven weeks) the hole had been steadily but very slowly closing in with lovely pink scar tissue. And I do mean slowly. We were making 1-2 mm of progress every four days.
It even got to the point where I started lining up all of the pictures I’d been taking, scaling them to the same(ish) size based on multiple landmarks, and measuring the size of the wound with circles and lines on PowerPoint.
left to right, late September to mid November (mostly every 4 days, but with a good 2 week gap between the 4th and 5th images)
The wound was persistently puffy and open for about two weeks at the end of October (between the 4th and 5th images above), and seemed only to get angrier and threaten more proud flesh. I hung around while my friend’s horse had a sizeable degloving wound checked out by the surgeon who treated it, and fortunately learned a good deal about granulation tissue, what it’s made of, and what it can look like. The answer: it can be made of almost nothing glued together by even less, and as a result can have a whole range of different appearances. (Life pro tip: do not google image search “granulation tissue”).
Murray also became less well behaved during bandage changes. Despite the hand walking and the training and the increased attention, one change at the end of October was awful. And then, as I was cleaning up the wound and getting prepared to re-wrap, another piece of skin fell off. In a different location. Below the original wound.
I don’t have any pictures of this because I was so busy screaming NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO that I was incapable of taking a picture.
Lucky for me, RBF was on hand and pointed out that the skin that had fallen off was very superficial and I could just use some more telfa over it and it would probably heal real quick. Even better, she was right.
wound shrinkage, as indicated by my cleverly-inserted red circle
And then — miracle of miracles — a scab appeared. Right over one of the deepest and almost-proud-flesh-iest bits of the wound, a nice healthy scab just showed up one day. And the rest of it was nice and dry and that yellow-y flesh that I’ve seen on other healing wounds. I’ve never been so happy to see a scab in my whole damn life. Scabs mean healing! Scabs mean that the granulation tissue was flat enough for … well I’m not sure what for! But a scab is a great forking sign!!
There is a tiny bit of puffiness left, which I discovered when I left the wrap off for a few hours to let the leg air out a bit. When I came back to it, the last little bit of open granulation tissue (by the blue arrow above) had puffed up, as it has been wont to do.
Our vet happened to be at the barn during this, and took a quick look. She proclaimed us almost done, and cleared Murray for limited turnout in the round pen. Murray celebrated in the way to which we have become accustomed.