Bumblefoot- What am I doing wrong?

Discussion in 'Emergencies / Diseases / Injuries and Cures' started by Breac, Aug 3, 2011.

  1. Breac

    Breac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    I'll try to keep everything as short and concise as I can.

    I currently have a 6-year-old EE hen, Leonard, who is suffering a relapse of bumblefoot. She had a case of Bumblefoot last year, also around late July/early August. Back then, my treatment regimen consisted of trying to remove the plugs on the first day, then soaking her feet in Epsom salts for five minutes for a week, followed by applying Neosporin on the scabs and wrapping bandages on her feet daily. After roughly a week of this, the swelling appeared to have gone down significantly and she was declared 'cured' and released back into the flock.

    Fast forward to last Thursday. I picked Leonard up and saw that her left foot looked so swollen it was ready to burst. The Bumblefoot was back. I looked up one of the more famous Bumblefoot treatment treads here: https://www.backyardchickens.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=236649 as well as a few others and attempted to follow the instructions as best I could.

    Nothing really went as planned or expected. After soaking her feet in Epsom salt water for a few minutes, I attempted to remove the plug and any other potential buildup in the foot. Once the scab was removed, there was literally no pus, plug, or diseased-looking gunk to be seen. Her foot was only filled with blood. An attempt on the other foot yielded similar results- no plug or explanation for the buildup.

    A few days later, it looked like even though the scab on her left foot was healed, the swelling had not gone down significantly. Two attempts to lance the foot (once in the pad near the scab site and once in the webbing of her toe, where there was lots of swelling and an unidentified mass) only revealed blood and no discharge of any sort.

    Besides the swollen foot, Leonard seems alert, active, and healthy. I really have no clue what I've done wrong at this point and what course of action I need to take. I'm wary about trying to dig into her feet again simply because nothing has ever come out of it. Am I doing something wrong, or is there another way to treat this?
     
  2. Nikkumz

    Nikkumz Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Im not a pro because ive never dealt with this, but i read a post once, where the 'plug' was actually on the other side or top of the foot. And whoever it was that was posting, was able to get it out from the top of the foot, because it was unreachable from the bottom. I dont remember who or when it was but ill keep looking fo rit to show you. They had pictures on thier post of the progress with the 'surgery' also. Good luck!
     
  3. KIDDSBANTAMS

    KIDDSBANTAMS Chillin' With My Peeps

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    We are having the same problem with one of our hens who has has a huge marble size swelling into her toes. We did removed a plug and alot of cheesy looking pus,etc. the first day but the swelling is still there. We soak everyday in epsom salt and betadine and then neosorpin and drawing salve then wrapped. We have cut on the mass several times and there is nothing there, but the swelling will not go down. She seems better, she is eating now and we let her out to walk around last night and she seemed ok except for the huge swelling in between her toes.
     
  4. chicmom

    chicmom Dances with Chickens

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    That sounds exactly like a bumble foot case I had with a GLW hen. I did the surgery, Everything looked good, and then it came back with a vengance a few months later. The webbing on top of her foot looked like a balloon, so I lanced it. Clear liquid came out.

    I read where bumble foot often comes back. Some people say, that you didn't get it all the first ime....I just don't know if that's the case.......

    Hope you get things figured out, and good luck!

    Sharon
     
  5. Breac

    Breac Chillin' With My Peeps

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    Apr 20, 2010
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    Thanks for the replies everyone! Right now it seems that there is no pus or clear fluid in her feet; only blood. I'd like to be able to take care of this problem once and for all.
     
  6. eirwin

    eirwin Out Of The Brooder

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    I'm having the same problem. I removed the scab but nothing underneath except blood. It also doesn't look like any of the pictures I have seen of bumble foot.
     
  7. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    I've done three surgeries and only once found anything useful. My first two efforts we tried like heck to get anything out - we cut extra deep, did the top of the foot, etc. No bumble. I swore I'd never try it again unless a foot looked very bad.

    Finally caught one of my leghorns with a very swollen foot.. Picked her up, picked a bit at the scab and I DID see yellow so I decided to do the surgery. I got out a blob of mushy pus, but nothing hard. Even lancing the swelling between the toes yielded nothing. To make matters worse, she worries at any dressing I put on there (the other two did not), so after a day or so I had to give up and leave it undressed. Seems ok/scabbed over today, but she's picking at it now and then and now she's scared of the big evil monster that wants to keep looking at her foot. [​IMG]

    I do have the tri-cide-neo so I'll alternate soaks with that and Epsom salt on the next BF I get before resorting to surgery, as it seems I don't have much luck, even with classic bumblefoot appearing symptoms. You are not alone!
     
  8. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Quote:I learned a long time ago that just because there's a dark round scab on the bottom of a foot doesnt necessarily mean there is an infection. Sometimes they disappear on their own. If you see a dark round scab on the bottom of the foot and it's red or swollen around the scab, or the footpad/foot/leg are swollen and/or there's a limp, that means there's an infection and you gotta go in and dig it out or use tricide neo. Do not soak the foot in epsom salts if you are using tricide neo...it must be one or the other. For tricide neo, you must mix it in distilled water only and soak the affected foot twice daily for 7 minutes each time. Continue doing this daily til the scab/infection completely disappears. Small scabs usually take 5 days to a week to disappear, the bigger the scab and infection, the more days it takes to disappear. This is why I prefer to do the surgery, to get it done and over with.
    So, if you dont see red around the scab, no swelling and no limping...surgery and tricide neo arnt needed. Just keep an eye out for those symptoms, and if you see any...go ahead and do the surgery or use trineo.
     
  9. featherz

    featherz Veggie Chick

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    Yah, my first two chickens I tried WERE limping and there was some swelling, but in retrospect the foot did not look all that bad. It DID have the scab, but if I hadn't read all these bumblefoot threads I would have just assumed it to be an abrasion. [​IMG] My leghorn definitely had swelling in one foot. She seems ok today after the surgery, but I think I'm going to get a bit of neoprene and make her a chicken shoe. This chicken can get off any dressing you can think of (I use vetwrap and I am an RN that's pretty decent at dressings)!

    Of course, I am still the evil foot poking monster. [​IMG]
     
  10. dawg53

    dawg53 Humble

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    Quote:Use duct tape. I use it and they can never get it off. It's pretty much waterproof and poop proof too! Use a sharp pair of scissors to cut through it when needed.
     

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