A MALTON equine hospital has invested £230,000 in new technology to boost the treatment of injured horses.

Injured racehorses and competition horses will benefit from new high-tech bone scan equipment at Rainbow Equine Hospital in Old Malton. It has invested in a state-of-the-art nuclear scintigraphy unit, the fourth generation of scintigraphy scanners at the hospital over several decades, which has been placed in a newly-converted part of the hospital, providing vets with crisp, high definition images of horses.

The hospital said that horses are injected with radiation before a sophisticated scanner, known as a gamma camera, is used to capture images of the horse’s skeleton, allowing vets to make quicker and more accurate diagnoses of injuries, including stress fractures, lame limbs, pelvic injuries and back problems such as “kissing spines”.

The new equipment cost £180,000 and there has been a further £50,000 investment to convert a barn into a self-contained unit to house the equipment, along with five stables for horses who remain radioactive for two days following the procedure. The investment has come from York-based VetPartners.

Rainbow vet Jonathon Dixon said: “The new scanner is now installed and fully operational, and this capability demonstrates the commitment by Rainbow Equine Hospital and VetPartners to being at the forefront of diagnostic imaging and veterinary medicine. It is a big step forward in technology and image quality and what we can achieve for our patients.”

The latest investment comes after work started on a purpose-built surgical and intensive care facility to house two new operating theatres as part of the hospital’s expansion over the next 12 months.