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View Full Version : necropsy result posted on RRHT for Rowdy and Direct Merger



TampaBayEquine
Mar. 18, 2008, 07:56 PM
http://www.rhht.org/PDFs/Red_Hills_Final_PDF.p

Necropsy results from UFL or, there is a link on the home page www.rhht.org

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 18, 2008, 07:57 PM
sorry, mistyped in title.

deltawave
Mar. 18, 2008, 08:00 PM
Ai, NOT a ruptured aorta. How very sad. :no:

JSwan
Mar. 18, 2008, 08:04 PM
Very sad.

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 18, 2008, 08:22 PM
indeed, very sad and very unlucky

Divine Comedy
Mar. 18, 2008, 09:23 PM
Just wondering, but is Salix legal in eventing? I'm not entirely sure that Salix would have prevented these tragic deaths, but I do know that Salix is an often used drug that is used to stop EIPH in the racehorse industry. These high level eventers are exercising as intensely as racehorses for longer periods of time. I know that there is a debate on whether Salix is performance enhancing or not. However, in light of the similarity of the cause of death of these two athletes, wouldn't it be worth a bit of performance enhancement in order to prevent deaths? Especially since the short course has become prevalent, I think that any enhancement in performance would be negligible since XC these days seems to be more dependent on training and adjustability anyways. Anyways, does anyone else have an opinion on this?

deltawave
Mar. 18, 2008, 09:26 PM
Not legal at the FEI level, and probably not at the USEA level, either. Given the endurance required at a 3-day (as opposed to a 1-2 minute horse race), my guess would be that Lasix would do more harm than good by causing more dehydration.

I know one of the horses had had problems with atrial fibrillation before. It does make one wonder if that had recurred, with disastrous results. :(

Jaegermonster
Mar. 18, 2008, 09:28 PM
The little bit of damage control they did on the last page for CMP was a nice touch don't you think? (cough)

Classic Melody
Mar. 18, 2008, 09:55 PM
I just did some quick googling on pulmonary hemorrhaging. Am I right in thinking it's just something that sometimes happens when an athlete is under intense stress? In other words, can we say the horses were put at risk because they were unusually exerted by some factor: the strenuous nature of the course, the weather conditions (if it was very hot), a lack of proper conditioning, or some previous medical condition?

I am thankful to Red Hills for releasing this info and doing it so promptly. I think it can help.

deltawave
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:01 PM
Yes, but in the vast majority of cases I believe pulmonary hemorrhage is idiopathic--it just happens. No, not at rest, but not always at maximum "red line" exertion, either.

There are a number of good articles on Medline (http://www.pubmed.gov), if you search for "equine exercise induced pulmonary hemorrhage", including one review from 2007 that I'm itching to read.

Bensmom
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:03 PM
Classic Melody -- thank you for the gracious comment.

Please guys, out of respect for those tremendous athletes and their owners, please do not turn this thread into another bashing of CMP. This weekend was tough enough on its own.

Libby

Jaegermonster
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:11 PM
Not bashing anybody, just an observation, although I did feel it was rather obvious and not appropriate that it was included in the necropsy results.
I wonder why it seems as though that sort of condition seems to occur more in eventing than in other disciplines, including racing. Even steeplechasing it doesn't seem to occur as often, or is it just that we don't hear about it as much unless it's eventing?

silver2
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:17 PM
I have personally seen three horses keel over from ruptured aortas doing nothing strenuous than standing in a paddock in my lifetime so my guess is that you just hear about it more.

BigRuss1996
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:22 PM
here is some more info on Pulmonary Hemorrhage in horses....

http://www.horsequest.com/journal/health/case1.htm

bornfreenowexpensive
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:23 PM
Even steeplechasing it doesn't seem to occur as often, or is it just that we don't hear about it as much unless it's eventing?


you just don't hear about it as often. First steeplechase I watched had 3-4 horses die...not all were from this cause but I believe one was (and caused the fall of the others). Not a usual occurance either....but it took me a few years before I could go again. I've also personally known of others who died in their fields and one out fox hunting.

Jaegermonster
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:27 PM
I suppose i can see that, we did have one at our Opening Hunt this season drop out from under his rider. It wasn't hot, we weren't running super hard, at the first check down he went. One of our other members is an equine vet, she was right there and he was gone. She said it was a heart attack, no necropsy or anything.
I wonder why it is that we hear about it more in eventing? It just does seem to me that there are more, and more often, than other disciplines.

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:28 PM
"I wonder why it seems as though that sort of condition seems to occur more in eventing than in other disciplines, including racing. Even steeplechasing it doesn't seem to occur as often, or is it just that we don't hear about it as much unless it's eventing?"


EIPH occus more often than you realize in barrel racers, I have also seen it in a few endurance horses.

GotSpots
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:35 PM
In addition to thanking Red Hills for providing an outlet to post the information from the necropsies, we should also thank the owners who released the information. It is a kindness that neither had to do, and helps folks come to an understanding and hopefully some degree of resolution.

Jaegermonster
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:41 PM
"I wonder why it seems as though that sort of condition seems to occur more in eventing than in other disciplines, including racing. Even steeplechasing it doesn't seem to occur as often, or is it just that we don't hear about it as much unless it's eventing?"


EIPH occus more often than you realize in barrel racers, I have also seen it in a few endurance horses.

So why do we hear about it more in our sports as opposed to the others? The non horse public doesn't care any more about endurance than they do hunters or eventers, is it that the falls are more catastrophic in eventing than in barrells or what is it?
It would be so much better if there were a way to find this condition before the horse suffers a tragic end. I know in the case of Direct Merger the horse had had a heart problem in the past, but most of the time (at least in the ones that i have heard of) it was a sudden thing, kind of like in human athletes.
Is what happened to those two horses a heart attack, or is more like a long QT thing or is an artery bursting under exertion?

Outyougo
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:53 PM
My father had a polo pony ( a minus 2!) drop dead walking out on the field for an evening practice match. Lovely horse, sad father-- In the end one has to realize how big a thoroughbred's heart really is! THere are much worse ways to go than on a sunny Wednesday in August

"Heaves Rancheros Amigos"

Jaegermonster
Mar. 18, 2008, 10:54 PM
I agree, that's what we all said at Opening Hunt. The fixture was gorgeous, and we all said "We should be so lucky, to drop dead at the end of the first run on Opening Meet, and get buried at this beautiful farm".
It was still an awful thing to see, and everyone was very upset. But I suppose preferable to a nasty colic or lingering founder.

But if there is a way to avoid the carnage we are seeing on xc courses over the last few years (both human and equine) we need to figure out what it is.

Bensmom
Mar. 18, 2008, 11:04 PM
dw, you can probably help us understand this as much as anyone can.

From what I understand, the only sign that the heart attack, to use a more often heard term, was about to happen, would be that the heart rate would suddenly climb. Otherwise, there would be no sign until the horse went down.

GotSpots, thanks again for recognizing how wonderful these owners have been in sharing information. Both families have been fantastic under very trying circumstances and are very supportive of the sport despite losing cherished members of their families.

Libby

PhoenixFarm
Mar. 18, 2008, 11:31 PM
I had an equine insurance adjuster tell me the population of equines statsitically most likely to die from cardiac events are breeding stallions. That 7 or 8 times out of ten that a claim is made for death due to cardiac events, the victim is a breeding stallion. Steeplechasers/race horses take then next slot or two out of ten, then eventers, endurance, and barrel horses make up a small percentsge followed by everybody else.

Most horses that die from cardiac events (again, insurance statistically speaking) are in the field when it occurs.

My hubby is still haunted by the 'chaser he had die underneath him due to pulmonary hemmorage, and this was 20+ years ago. My heart and prayers are with the families of these horses. It's something you never get over.

2boys
Mar. 19, 2008, 06:51 AM
I watched one of my all time favorite horses die of either this or an anyeurism eight years ago, while he was galloping through his field. It was horrifying to see, and not be able to do anything for him-he truly looked at me and whinnied. But I do find solace in the fact that he went quite quickly, in the prime of his life, while playing in a pasture with his pony. I know of a ridiculous amount of animals that have had (as they make their way to a slaughterhouse) much more miserable endings. :cry:

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 08:03 AM
It is NOT a heart attack, as the term is generally understood, and I think it's sloppy of vets to use that term because people sort of know what "heart attack" means and get the wrong idea. Horses do not GET atherosclerosis/hardening of the arteries/plaque buildup, and do not suffer from coronary "blockages" except in very rare circumstances with parasite infestations.

Having said that, sudden death in horses is usually due to aortic rupture or pulmonary hemorrhage. The former is also not rare in breeding stallions, and happens to also occur in turkeys quite commonly! Pulmonary hemorrhage is what we commonly think of as happening on the racetrack with "bleeders". It is not really something that happens in humans, so my understanding of it is pretty vague.

Both are associated with exertion, but definitely NOT exclusively so. In EIPH (bleeding) there have been loose associations with other structural heart problems like a-fib, valve disease, enlarged right ventricle, etc.

I want to learn more about this and can post more later, gotta run to the school bus right now! :)

annikak
Mar. 19, 2008, 09:03 AM
My strange response...is Thank God. No one could have known, and it's heartbreaking. :cry::cry:

I am so grateful for them to post the results (again, totally unnecessary, yet, helpful if we are to ever figure out if there is anything we can do and to quell any suspicions- mine included, i am shamed to say). I for one, wondered- as I am trying to figure out a solution to a problem, where IMO, there is no clear "problem" to be addressed.

As another poster said...Thank GOD the riders did not get hurt. My heart breaks for Missy and Jon. As said in Kevin's letter, those horses were the best of the best. I loved Monty- and got a horse that reminded me of him. One of my favorites ever. No matter what anyone did or might/could have done would have prevented this from happening. Small comfort, I am sure-

pwynnnorman
Mar. 19, 2008, 09:40 AM
So does the seemingly randomness (or unpredictability) of such incidents mean nothing should/could be done to prevent them? I'm asking because I had a sense that some reactions were along those lines (to do something to prevent such incidents due to the assumption (???) that over-exertion has been causing them).

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:04 AM
Well, I don't think we should accept that these things are entirely RANDOM without knowing a lot more about the topic. For all we know, there may be a genetic factor, a breed- or gender-specific factor, a conditioning factor, a particular exertional trigger, who knows, maybe even seasonal or hormonal factors!

The first thing to be done would be to collect data on all known cases of EIPH-induced death or serious morbidity and make a database including all this stuff: age, gender, breeding, activity at the time of the bleed, previous medical problems, etc. etc. etc. For all I know there might actually already be something like this in Thoroughbred racing circles, where "bleeding" is quite common.

The second step would be to do hemodynamic studies on horses under intense activity, trying to better understand pulmonary pressures, right heart hemodynamics, etc. It would be MOST useful to study horses with documented problems. I'm very curious about a link to atrial fibrillation--in humans, AF is often seen in perfectly healthy individuals with stone-cold normal hearts, but it is ALSO seen in people with various kinds of heart pathology, too. ESPECIALLY right-heart and cardiopulmonary issues.

This of course would require huge funding and effort, but I do hope the USEA will make some moves in that direction. I'm sure vets are out there wanting to do or already DOING this work. We should support them.

If, in the end, it proves to be a random thing, I don't think it's worth worrying about it. But so very few things in medicine are TRULY random once we understand them thoroughly, that I suspect there IS one or several "keys" to this disorder that could potentially be figured out.

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:11 AM
Interesting tidbit I've just found:

The great TB sire "Eclipse" was apparently a bleeder, the first one described. His great-grandsire was named "Bleeding Childers", probably for obvious reasons. Eclipse of course was a prolific sire, and is prevalent in TB bloodlines. So there is one possible genetic link, albeit a remote one.

I'm digging and finding lots. If you are a member of IVIS, there is a good review article there, and there was one published in 2007 by the Equine Veterinary Journal that I'm going to order. Remember to be aware of where you search. Avoid google. ;)

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:15 AM
A few more blurbs for the curious . . . (bold emphasis mine)


Diagnosis

Epistaxis - Exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage was diagnosed originally by visible epistaxis (Fig. 3 (http://javascript%3Cb%3E%3C/b%3E:fileName=%27fig3.asp%27;displayInfo%28%29)). At that time, it was believed to be a serious problem but not widespread because epistaxis occurred only in 0.25 to 13% of all sprinting horses [9-12 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref9)]. Indeed, a very recent study of a quarter of a million race starts reported the incidence of epistaxis to be 0.15% [13 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref13)]. Takahashi and colleagues [13 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref13)] found epistaxis to be more common:
Following steeplechase rather than flat races,
in older rather than young (2 year olds) horses, and
in females rather than sexually active males. In addition epistaxis was more common in shorter races of a higher intensity.
Causes and Mechanisms

Numerous causes and pathophysiologic mechanisms have been proposed for EIPH, including small airway disease, upper airway obstruction, exercise-induced hyperviscosity, mechanical stresses of respiration and locomotion, redistribution of blood flow in the lung, alveolar pressure fluctuations, and pulmonary hypertension. Several factors may actually cause the pulmonary system to become heavily stressed to the point where capillaries fail.
Infusion of 10 and 15 micron microspheres of different colors into the jugular vein and left atrium revealed that only those injected into the jugular vein appeared in the airways. This observation identifies the pulmonary rather than the bronchial circulation as the source of EIPH. Current evidence suggests that stress failure of the pulmonary capillaries results from pulmonary vascular hypertension (which can exceed 120 mmHg mean arterial pressure combined with very negative intrapleural and alveolar pressures that summate at the blood-gas barrier to create a high capillary transmural pressure leading to hemorrhage. Within a given horse, the severity of EIPH increases as a function of mean pulmonary arterial pressure and may be exacerbated by inclined as opposed to flat running. The cause of hypertension may also be related to the enormous cardiac outputs in excess of 300 liters per minute that are demanded by the racehorse and which may be associated with maximal recruitment and distension of the pulmonary capillaries.

Conclusions

Several lines of evidence support a primary role for high pulmonary arterial pressures in the etiology of EIPH. These include:
Pulmonary arterial pressures in excess of 120 mmHg during intense exercise [47,48 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref47)].
Pulmonary capillary stress failure occurs above ~90 mmHg in both in vitro [50 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref50)] and in vivo [52 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref52)] studies of horses.
Furosemide (http://javascript%3Cb%3E%3C/b%3E:fileName=%27/products/product.asp?PN=furosemide%27;displayProd%28%29) lowers pulmonary artery pressures and EIPH severity [71,72 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref71)].
Under racing conditions, the incidence of EIPH is greater in shorter, higher intensity events that are expected to generate higher pulmonary arterial pressures [13 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref13)].

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:21 AM
More, and something that's perhaps immediately practical. I've always been a skeptic on these things (especially at the lower levels, jeez) but this is interesting:


The FLAIRtm nasal strip (http://www.flairstrips.com/) was introduced recently for horses to prevent or reduce collapse of the nasal passages and to decrease upper airway resistance [84 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref84)], particularly nasal resistance and to reduce intrapleural and alveolar pressure swings that may contribute to high pulmonary capillary transmural pressures and EIPH. Seven horses running at 12+1 m/s (~27 mph) were evaluated on the treadmill under control conditions and wearing an external nasal dilator in individual, random-ordered trials two weeks apart [85,86 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref85)]. Compared with controls, the nasal dilator significantly reduced oxygen uptake (Fig. 6 (javascript:fileName='fig6.asp';displayFig2())) and carbon dioxide production while running at high speed. BAL revealed a 33% reduction on average in EIPH when the external nasal dilator was worn (Fig. 7 (javascript:fileName='fig7.asp';displayFig2())) [86 (http://www.ivis.org/special_books/Lekeux/erickson/chapter.asp?LA=1#ref86)]. Specifically, 5 out of 7 horses elicited a reduction in EIPH during the nasal strip trial and those horses that bled the most on the control run, decreased EIPH the most when wearing the nasal strip (Fig. 8 (javascript:fileName='fig8.asp';displayFig2())). These data demonstrate that the nasal dilator can lower whole body oxygen consumption and reduce EIPH.

mjrtango93
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:34 AM
Well from somebody that owns a diagnosed EIPH horse there is nothing you can do about it. Lasix is illegal for us to use in competition, and really doesn't prevent anything, pretty much just flushes the system out afterwards so the risk of infection is lower when they have blood in the lungs. Racehorses are often bleeders but not very common to have a true EIPH episode. Racehorses often bleed as a result of underdeveloped lungs put under extreme stress. There is commonly very little actual long term tissue damage in those horses and many go on from the track and never bleed again. My advanced horse had his first EIPH episode a week before shipping to Kentucky the second year, he was 10 years old and never had any issues. He was fit and ready to go and out of nowhere had the worst "first bleed" that UC Davis had ever seen. In 1 bleed epsidode basically destroyed well over 1/3 of his lungs. A-fib attacks are also common in these horses, Tango has now had 4 and he is retired! All of them were while he was in turn out doing nothing as he was retired after trying to bring him back once (which resulted in a minor bleed, but not enough to come out the nose). There is not much in terms of research done on event horses and EIPH as because of the progessive nature of it, not many horses keep showing. We have vets from 5 continents trying to figure it out and they all gave up. Possibly both horses were EIPH horses as apparently only around 10% bleed bad enough to come out the nose or mouth, you wouldn't know without a scope. I feel terrible for Missy and Jon as I know how hard it is to lose them quickly and for something that you have no control over. As solice for both at least they know there horses went quickly doing what they loved. I had a brother to Jon's horse Monty that we lost a year and a half ago due to an accident he had in his stall. Horses are unpredictable and heart breaking, but we all love them anyway.

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 10:58 AM
The presence of intermittent atrial fibrillation really perks up my interest. These horses may have "something" that causes them to be less tolerant of extremes of exertion, and atrial fibrillation is (possibly) more of a symptom than the primary problem. Pulmonary hypertension, it all sounds like a variant of this to me. I certainly hope all the vets in the world have not "given up" on this topic!

Makes me itch to go to vet school, actually. :p

HiJumpGrrl
Mar. 19, 2008, 11:04 AM
Makes me itch to go to vet school, actually. :p
Woman, you are CRAZY! :lol:

What fabulous information. Thank you.

bornfreenowexpensive
Mar. 19, 2008, 11:07 AM
Interesting on the nasal strip...I was skeptical of them as well but if they help even a bit, then I think I need to consider them.

I agree with mjrtango93.....horses are such fragile things and will break your heart but the good makes it worth going through the heartache.

BigRuss1996
Mar. 19, 2008, 11:12 AM
Maybe we could get some of the vet schools (like NBC) interested in doing a study on Event horses and how this effects them.... I know there are lots of studies on racehorses and steeplechase horses.

tommygirl
Mar. 19, 2008, 11:58 AM
Does anyone know if there is a link between this problem and long-term effects from the use of steriods in race horses? The few horses I have known to die from this were ex-racehorses.

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 12:01 PM
I don't know, but you'd have to define what kind of steroids more precisely: anabolic or corticosteroids? Both are used freely in racing horses.

grayarabpony
Mar. 19, 2008, 12:52 PM
I have wondered both about genetics and the use of anabolic steroids in racehorses.

mjrtango93
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:31 PM
The presence of intermittent atrial fibrillation really perks up my interest. These horses may have "something" that causes them to be less tolerant of extremes of exertion, and atrial fibrillation is (possibly) more of a symptom than the primary problem. Pulmonary hypertension, it all sounds like a variant of this to me. I certainly hope all the vets in the world have not "given up" on this topic!

Makes me itch to go to vet school, actually. :p

Well at least in Tango's case the A-fib was never detected before the EIPH episodes. It was actually 6 months post the first bleed while in pasture (basically no exertion). He hasn't had any in about 2 years and is now in work again (keeps fingers crossed). Since the EIPH he now can not breath in a re-breath bag without struggling and growning on experation (when it should be opposite), he displaces his soft palate, and his heart will drop into a full four beat rythem (weirdest thing you ever heard when your used to a 2 beat) and then go back to a 2, drop a beat and can switch back to a 4, but normally when he's at rest. Tango possibly has a much more severe underlying health problem though as well as he has poor marrow aspirates. His marrow counts come back as a horse that should be in a full cancer episode yet low and behold they can't find the cancer.

I wonder if they did CBC panels on Monty and Rowdy as my guy hasn't had a normal white or red blood cell count in 5 years now. He was at points so low on both (again normally they spike on one or the other) that they weren't sure how he was still standing and apparently healthy. I wish more research was conducted to get some answers and see if there are preventative measures we can take for our equine friends, or find the genetic thread that creates a higher likelihood of the pre-disposition.

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:32 PM
Maybe we could get some of the vet schools (like NBC) interested in doing a study on Event horses and how this effects them.... I know there are lots of studies on racehorses and steeplechase horses.



One of the many reasons racehorses are used in studies invloves tracking results . There is already a race record of race length, conditions, race time and money earned pre-study or treatment. "After the study" it is easy to track if the horse returned to the same level of performance (or if it changed) . You also can track them by race performance for as long as they are racing. And, obviously, there is a large, fairly accessible, population to sample from....

mjrtango93
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:36 PM
Interesting on the nasal strip...I was skeptical of them as well but if they help even a bit, then I think I need to consider them.

I agree with mjrtango93.....horses are such fragile things and will break your heart but the good makes it worth going through the heartache.

By the way not everybody agrees on the use of nasal strips. I used them religiously before Tango had his problem when he started going intermediate 3 years prior, he still bleed. UC Davis has not found a strong correlation on using those strips and a lower occurance. The one thing they did recommend (which again we can't use) is the bronchial dialator for horses (basically a huge horsie asthma inhaler). Tango has used it at home a couple of times because of the diminished lung capacity and its amazing the amount of air he gets in. Maybe we need to look into some of these and do research on the effects so that they can be used in competition under certain circumstances.

Rhonda
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:36 PM
Atrial Fibrillation is being seen more in standardbreds. There are a number of one stallion's offspring who have exhibited it and have been treated and gone on to continue racing. He himself was found dead in his paddock at age 10 and was said to be bright and happy when turned out.

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:38 PM
Makes me itch to go to vet school, actually. :p


deltawave,
I would bet that there aren't too many double board certified (I mean veterinary and human) cardiologists out there. I say go for it you have another 7 years ! Maybe you could fast track :)

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:42 PM
Not everyone agrees on nasal strips or a lot of other things. That is why we rely on research, so there can be some consensus. Individual preferences and experiences don't hold up to good, solid randomized trials.

TBE, one of my partners was an equine vet for 9 years before going back and becoming a human cardiologist. :) He wasn't a veterinary cardiologist, though--"just" a regular horse/large animal vet. He would probably go :rolleyes: at the very thought! :lol:

millerra
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:43 PM
I'd personally like to have a couple of research studies to answer the following questions:

1) How does the current course design and the way the riders ride them to "make time" affect the horses' cardiopulmonary system vs the longer courses w/ fewer combos and longer galloping stretches? Answer the question(s) of how heart rate, oxygen deprivation/blood pH differ on the two types of courses (old style vs new style).

2) If there is lung damage, how long does it take to "heal" or in another words, how long between runs should there be? Are we running the upper level horses too frequently over taxing courses for their cardiovascular/pulmonary systems to heal/restore properly?

Just my two cents and the questions boppin' around my own head...

poltroon
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:50 PM
deltawave, to attract funding, is there a way to structure the studies such that we might also be able to answer some human questions about cardiopulmonary function?

mjrtango93
Mar. 19, 2008, 01:59 PM
DW: If you want you can come take a look at Tango anytime! I have all the vet records you could ever want and some. UC Davis was pretty stumped by him.

Also just for reference here Tango is not TB and never raced, he is actually irish draught and only about 1/8 irish TB, but built like a TB with bigger bone. So he is not overly heavy which you would think would contribute to the EIPH. Also his lungs are actually larger then your average horse (found that out trying to x-ray him and they weren't in quite the right spot). He was born and raised in Ireland, broke in at 4 and didn't show until he was 5, and lightly at that. So that also kind of gets rid of the too much too soon argument, at least in his case. He was on nothing prior, just adequan, and your normal vitamin for competition horses and not much grain. So if you want the control group for your study Tango would be it.

Also interesting that Monty is ISH and Rowdy was a Connemara mix, so obviously breed isn't a huge contributor.

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 02:18 PM
I wonder how many of these horses descend from Eclipse, the original "bleeder"? Just like Impressive, a very successful and prolific stallion can pass on bad traits (along with the good) that might not have otherwise survived. Even "non-thoroughbreds" often have a drop of TB blood way back there.

poltroon, I really doubt it. Too much of a difference between species in terms of hemodynamics, and human studies are plentiful and well-funded but NOT extrapolate-able to other species, in general. And when one wants to study animals, one does not choose horses. :)

Humans simply haven't the capacity for prolonged, extreme exertion, although there have been many hemodynamic studies done on elite athletes. But the "swings" in normal parameters between horse and human are just too different. Horses can up their heart rate from the 20's to the 200's with exertion, humans just can't. Horses can up their cardiac output 10-15x normal on demand, humans can MAYBE do 8x normal. Horses "hoard" blood cells in their spleens to be injected into the circulating blood volume on demand, humans do not. Horses apparently can send their pulmonary pressures up near 100 on demand without harm, whereas humans cannot AT ALL withstand those kinds of pressures acutely and they are deadly when chronic.

As they say, "a whole different animal". :)

silver2
Mar. 19, 2008, 02:31 PM
It was common knowledge, for what that's worth :p when I was a teenager that Bold Ruler/ Secretariat horses were more prone to this kind of thing. Big bodied horses with lots of white in particular.

Entirely based on old crusty guy speculation.

Rhonda
Mar. 19, 2008, 02:33 PM
deltawave
the stb goes back to Eclipse through Hambletonian (on his dam side).

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 03:40 PM
My small-bodied, dark bay Bold Ruler granddaughter (one tiny white ankle) bled twice in her short and unsuccessful racing career.

Are there any modern-day TBs who do NOT have Bold Ruler in the pedigree somewhere? :lol:

4Martini
Mar. 19, 2008, 03:58 PM
Okay- I need advice. I have a 19YO OTTB who I did my first BN on last summer. After cross country he had a nose bleed out of one nostril. The vet at the event looked at him and said probably no big deal - he just over exerted himself. (It was hot and he was being a PITA.) I also called my main vet who wasn't too concerned as it cleared up quickly and we had scoped him 9 months prior for a nose bleed he had in the pasture (same dripping out of one nostril, but lasted a few days of dripping- on that scope they found the blood was coming out of his sinus.)

Is he at high risk due for more serious future issues due to the post CC nose bleed? Or is this totally uncorrelated? He came back and SJed fine the next day (I took him home that night thinking I would WD, but when I put him on the lunge in the morning he was ready to play.)

Appreciate any thoughts!

mjrtango93
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:09 PM
Okay- I need advice. I have a 19YO OTTB who I did my first BN on last summer. After cross country he had a nose bleed out of one nostril. The vet at the event looked at him and said probably no big deal - he just over exerted himself. (It was hot and he was being a PITA.) I also called my main vet who wasn't too concerned as it cleared up quickly and we had scoped him 9 months prior for a nose bleed he had in the pasture (same dripping out of one nostril, but lasted a few days of dripping- on that scope they found the blood was coming out of his sinus.)

Is he at high risk due for more serious future issues due to the post CC nose bleed? Or is this totally uncorrelated? He came back and SJed fine the next day (I took him home that night thinking I would WD, but when I put him on the lunge in the morning he was ready to play.)

Appreciate any thoughts!


If you've had it checked and its just the sinus then you should be fine. What happened with these horses was bleeding in the lungs. Horses can get bloody noses from allergies, or burst capularies, or just plain old cracked skin in the nose. Sounds like your guy probably just burst a vessel somewhere and a little came out. Normally EIPH horses or true lung bleeders will have it come out both nostrils.

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:11 PM
A unilateral (one-sided) nosebleed is just as likely to be due to sinuses as lungs, I think. Especially if the horse had a history of sinus bleeding, I'd be inclined to not worry too much. He's just as likely to exert himself at that level playing around in the paddock as he is at BN. :)

Lung bleeding is usually, but not always, out of both nostrils.

NMK
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:14 PM
Guttural Pouch Mycosis can also be a cause of bleeding through the nostril, and it is serious. It is best to get everything scoped if you have an episode to be sure.

Nancy

vineyridge
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:41 PM
Deltawave, can you get hold of this one?
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17402417?ordinalpos=3&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsP anel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

Sounds like it might be more or less on point.

I know you've seen this one:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16163941?ordinalpos=10&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsP anel.Pubmed_RVDocSum

But these studies on risk factors are interesting:
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/sites/entrez?Db=pubmed&DbFrom=pubmed&Cmd=Link&LinkName=pubmed_pubmed&LinkReadableName=Related%20Articles&IdsFromResult=15038426&ordinalpos=27&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsP anel.Pubmed_RVDocSum
There is a TB foundation mare from about 1850 named Pocahontas. She was the dam of Stockwell, King Tom and Rataplan. I seem to remember that there is a mention in her biography on TbHeritage that she was a bleeder or that her offspring were bleeders. I know I read that in one of their biographies, and I think it was hers.

Oops, she was a roarer, and some of her offspring were roarers.

eqsiu
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:46 PM
So. Is there a way to determine predisposition? I have known 3 horses that dropped dead due to similar things (well, no necropsy so aortic aneurism or pulmonary hemorrhage, who knows). One was in his stall, two were in a pasture. This would certainly be something to not reproduce, but is there a link? Or random? The frustrating thing is that you never know. :(

deltawave
Mar. 19, 2008, 04:58 PM
Yep, that's the abstract that got me wondering about inherent right-heart pathology/pulmonary hypertension as a possible cause of bleeding. It's not a really detailed study (and I can only look at the abstract) and bleeders weren't diagnosed very precisely but it does suggest a link between "bleeders" and an enlarged right heart. Chicken? Or egg?

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 19, 2008, 05:01 PM
Are there any modern-day TBs who do NOT have Bold Ruler in the pedigree somewhere? :lol:[/QUOTE]


My 7 yo OTT TB does not have Bold Ruler per say, but does have Nasrullah. Not a bleeder as far as I know, however, I obtained her 3rd hand OTT. My opinion is, if she has any fitness issues, or bleeds of course, then I would scope her....

JER
Mar. 19, 2008, 05:16 PM
I'd personally like to have a couple of research studies to answer the following questions:

1) How does the current course design and the way the riders ride them to "make time" affect the horses' cardiopulmonary system vs the longer courses w/ fewer combos and longer galloping stretches? Answer the question(s) of how heart rate, oxygen deprivation/blood pH differ on the two types of courses (old style vs new style).

This is a very interesting avenue for investigation.

At Burghley last year, several riders wore heart monitors while riding XC and they showed the values in the broadcast and on the DVD. I don't recall all the riders (Lucy Wiegersma and Polly Stockton, IIRC) but I do remember someone getting up above 200.

So yes, the riders HRs changed with gallops and combinations and the finish line. We can assume the same is probably true of the horse and I'd love to see the results of such testing.

Formula One racing tested drivers on several physiological parameters in order to develop better safety standards. Most drivers fit the same patterns of rising HR at the start and in difficult curves, then falling HR on straightaways. (One driver, a preternaturally calm individual, gave opposite readings -- his HR dropped whenever he got in a stressful situation.)

The researchers also measured dehydration, pH of sweat, vibration, G forces, temperature, etc and analyzed them along with the HR data. The idea was to determine when accidents were most likely to happen, either through 'faulty messages' or driver error.

If this can be calculated for humans, it can also be calculated for horses, although the parameters and reporting methods might be a bit different. Ultimately, the results of such an analysis could impact course design by allowing for proper physiological recovery -- not just perceived recovery -- on XC.

vineyridge
Mar. 19, 2008, 05:24 PM
It looks as though a supplement to the Equine Vet J in August 2007 published three articles on EIPH. There really has been a huge amount of work done, and the nice thing about using National Hunt horses is that their exertion is more comparable to eventers on cross country.

Couple of other South African studies look interesting. They are statistical studies of a large population of racing TBs.

TampaBayEquine
Mar. 19, 2008, 05:40 PM
Grayson-Jockey Research Foundation already has studies in the works regarding EIPH as it a big problem in the TB racing industry, we all know TB racing is motivated by profit. EIPH costs $ in slow horses and in meds. MSU also did a study on using adjunct bleeder treatments, such as aminocaproic acid, in conjunction with GJC and AAEP.

You can join /www.grayson-jockeyclub.org and donate ....


This is from their Grants page:


Mapping Occlusion of Veins in EIPH
Dr. Fred Derksen, Michigan State University. First year, $61,822

This is another approach in the series of attempts to understand fully why so many horses experience bleeding (Exercise Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage: EIPH) in the lungs as a result of high exercise. In past research funded by the foundation, this research team discovered scarring around blood vessels, which obstructs the veins and causes back-up in the lungs and rupture of its small blood vessels. This new project is designed to determine the location and extent of vein scarring in the lungs and compare it to horses that have not raced, also relating the location of the scarring with the location of the bleeding. Another aspect will be investigating why vein scarring occurs by studying molecules in the vein walls that signal scarring to occur. This project has the potential to guide research in a new direction for effective prevention and/or treatment of a widespread occurrence

More studies in the works:

Funded By: National Institutes of Health Start Date: 03/01/06
University: American College of Veterinary Surgeons Completion Date: 12/30/07
Title of Study: Can Conjugated Estrogens and Aminocaproic Acid Reduce EIPH?
Description:
Primary Investigator: Howard H. Erickson
Co Investigator: None

Funded By: Grayson-Jockey Club Research Founda Start Date: 04/01/08
University: Michigan State University Completion Date: 04/01/10
Title of Study: MAPPING OCCLUSION OF VEINS IN EIPH
Description: This is another approach in the series of attempts to understand fully why so many horses experience bleeding (Exercise Induced Pulmonary Hemorrhage: EIPH) in the lungs as a result of high exercise. In past research funded by the foundation, this research team discovered scarring around blood vessels, which obstructs the veins and causes back-up in the lungs and rupture of its small blood vessels. This new project is designed to determine the location and extent of vein scarring in the lungs and compare it to horses that have not raced, also relating the location of the scarring with the location of the bleeding. Another aspect will be investigating why vein scarring occurs by studying molecules in the vein walls that signal scarring to occur. This project has the potential to guide research in a new direction for effective prevention and/or treatment of a widespread occurrence.
Primary Investigator: Frederik Derksen
Co Investigator: None

Funded By: National Institutes of Health Start Date: 07/01/06
University: American College of Veterinary Surgeons Completion Date: 06/30/07
Title of Study: The Role of Pulmonary Leukocytes in Reducing EIPH with Concentrated Quine Serum
Description:
Primary Investigator: Howard H. Erickson
Co Investigator: None