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Equine Neurology at UC Davis

Equine neurology at the UC Davis veterinary hospital is part of the equine internal medicine service. Available neurology-related services include comprehensive neurologic examinations, cerebrospinal fluid collections, myelograms, CT scans, brain wave (ECG), electromyography (EMG), and slinging capabilities for horses that are unable to stand unassisted.

10 Things You Might Not Know About Equine Neurology

UC Davis professor and Terry Holliday Equine and Comparative Neurology Endowed Presidential Chair Dr. Monica Aleman shared her extensive expertise on these facts about equine neurology.

Checking Under The Hood

Buying a horse can be a lot like buying a car; both are significant investments. Regardless of the sticker price, it’s a good idea to take a peek under the hood before you drive off the lot. A pre-purchase examination (PPE, or “vet check”) can be minimal or extensive, but it should always include a neurological evaluation.

Neurological Examination in the Horse

Equine neurological examinations* evaluate horses from head to tail. They are performed to evaluate signs consistent with neurologic disease or to establish that a horse is neurologically normal, such as during a pre-purchase exam. A neurological exam can be divided into two parts: static and dynamic. 

The Static Examination occurs while the horse is standing still.

Equine Neurologic Conditions

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Encephalitis = inflammation of the brain

Encephalopathy = disease of the brain

Myelitis = inflammation of the spinal cord

Myelopathy = disease of the spinal cord

Myeloencephalitis = inflammation of the brain and spinal cord

Myeloencephalopathy = disease of the brain and spinal cord

Director's Message - Fall 2021

A note from Center for Equine Health director Dr. Carrie Finno on the current issue of the Horse Report.

UC Davis Offers the Latest Advances in Equine Joint Therapies

The Transfusion Medicine Service at the UC Davis veterinary hospital provides an array of specialized blood products for many species in addition to horses, including dogs, cats, cows, llamas, sheep, goats, and pigs. More than 800 transfusions take place at the veterinary hospital annually. In 2020, 93 horses received 143 units (each unit is approximately one liter) of whole blood or blood product.

10 Things You Might Not Know About Equine Joint Health

Joint health can be a confusing topic. We collaborated with Dr. Sarah le Jeune of the UC Davis Equine Integrative Sports Medicine and Equine Surgery and Lameness Services and Scott Katzman of the Equine Surgery and Lameness Service to provide some clarity.

Supplementing For Joint Health: What the Science Says

Owners are increasingly proactive about horse health, performance and longevity, which is clearly reflected in the ever-growing market for equine supplements, also known as nutraceuticals. In a 2017 survey of owners in the U.S., 84% reported giving supplements to at least one horse. Of these, 90% indicated they would use supplements to treat or prevent joint issues.

To Inject Or Not To Inject?

Joint (intra-articular (IA)) injections are often performed to treat joint inflammation and injury. This delivers treatment directly into the joint, ensuring the therapeutics are present where they are most needed, as opposed to systemic treatments (i.e. given intravenously, orally or intramuscularly) that have to travel through the body to the site of injury or disease.

It All Hinges On The Joints

Equine athletic potential and subsequent performance, success, and longevity hinge on healthy joints. Joints are essentially where two or more bones meet, yet they allow the body to perform complicated functions. Some allow for movement, influencing range of motion, stride length and overall comfort.

There are three different types of joints:

Sarah Shaffer Receives 2021 Wilson Award

Sarah Shaffer received the 2021 James M. Wilson Award, which recognizes a graduate student or resident who significantly advances equine health through publication of the year’s most outstanding research report. Shaffer, a Ph.D.

Director's Message - Summer 2021

A note from Center for Equine Health director Dr. Carrie Finno on the current issue of the Horse Report

Equine Vaccines: Some Specifics

What are the advantages of having a veterinarian vaccinate my horse?

It is recommended to have a veterinarian vaccinate your horse, instead of doing it yourself, for several reasons.