01/18/2007 1:00AM

Barbaro's medication cut


Barbaro is receiving less pain medication as he continues to improve from his setback a little more than a week ago, according to an update issued Thursday by the University of Pennsylvania's New Bolton Center.

"Barbaro's comfort level is improving steadily, and we are gradually tapering off his pain medication," said New Bolton's chief surgeon, Dr. Dean Richardson. "His vital signs are stable, and his appetite is good."

Between Jan. 9 and 10, Barbaro began to show signs of acute discomfort in his laminitic left hind leg, and veterinarians discovered that part of his hoof wall was separating from his foot. On Jan. 13, Barbaro underwent surgery to trim damaged hoof tissue away from his left hind hoof, which developed severe laminitis in July.

Barbaro remains in intensive care at the New Bolton Center in Kennett Square, Pa., where he first arrived on May 20 after shattering his right hind leg early in the Preakness Stakes.