Buddha's Injury Still Uncertain

Diagnostic tests were being done Monday on Buddha, the colt who was scratched out of the Kentucky Derby after coming up lame, with the cause of his physical problems still uncertain.

His attending veterinarian, Dr. Ken Reed, said while they hadn't found out a whole lot more, Buddha was sent Sunday night to Rood and Riddle Equine Hospital in Lexington, Ky., under the care of Dr. Larry Bramlage. Buddha will undergo other testing at the clinic, including a bone scan (scintigraphy) and ultrasound of the tendons.

Reed said that diagnostic blocks (local anesthesia) showed that it is possible the horse might have a "high suspensory" injury in his left front leg, with 85% improvement when that area was blocked. Proximal suspensory desmitis is inflammation in the suspensory ligament, which originates in the upper portion of the cannon bone and goes all the way to an insertion point on the sesamoid bones. It can be caused by excessive stress during training or racing, direct trauma, or irritation secondary to a fracture.

Reed said the horse probably has two problems taking place, with shoulder bursitis a possible secondary injury adding to the lameness.