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Kissing spines: Correlation does not imply causation

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Study showed back pain and kissing spines not necessarily connected

So your horse has a sore back. And he's got kissing spines according to his radiographs. But based on data gathered by Karin Holm-Forsström and her colleagues, the two conditions are not necessarily connected. Lots of well functioning horses have kissing spines. And lots of horses with back pain don't have kissing spines. This tells us that back pain can plague horses with kissing spines without actually being caused by the kissing spines. And that's why best practice dictates that surgery should only be performed after all other treatment options are exhausted. It's also the cause of many a legal scuffle when horses with kissing spines are sold and subsequently develop back pain.

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