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Anyone ever switch from ranitidine to U-gard pellets?

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  • Anyone ever switch from ranitidine to U-gard pellets?

    I just read about the recent field study done using U-gard, and thought the results were impressive: http://www.corta-flx.com/pdf/U_Gard_Study.pdf

    My guy is currently on ranitidine. He's never actually had ulcers in the past, but the ranit. has kept his otherwise sketchy appetite consistent (his is already on high quality grain/hay/turnout/etc). Has anyone actually switched off of daily ranitidine to U-gard? If so, results?

    I was also curious about the magnesium in it. He already gets the maintenance dose of "Magnesium 5000" pellets, so I don't know if adding this will cause too much Mg in the diet. They are different sources of Mg I believe, but unfortunately U-gard doesn't state the milligram amount, only that it is "3.5%." I know the upper level intake is pretty high for Mg, but I guess it makes me feel a little iffy to not know the exact amounts.
    Originally posted by rustbreeches
    [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

  • #2
    Six horses? Not impressive. I would prefer to use medication if medication is called for, personally.
    Click here before you buy.

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    • #3
      That is the worst "study" I've ever read. "The horse receiving the heaping scoop showed the most improvement." Really? One horse received a bigger scoop than the rest... Not to mention there was no control group or anything standardized.

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by jlphilli View Post
        I just read about the recent field study done using U-gard, and thought the results were impressive: http://www.corta-flx.com/pdf/U_Gard_Study.pdf

        My guy is currently on ranitidine. He's never actually had ulcers in the past, but the ranit. has kept his otherwise sketchy appetite consistent [B]This indicates to me that there IS an ulcer issue going on. If there were no ulcers, Ranitidine wouldn't do squat to improve his appetite.[/B] (his is already on high quality grain/hay/turnout/etc). Has anyone actually switched off of daily ranitidine to U-gard? If so, results?

        FWIW, my mare had U-Gard powder in her meals, and her ulcers recurred anyways. She is now on Ranitidine and is back on feed. I was only feeding U-Gard powder because I had it on hand, but I won't continue to waste my money on it.

        I was also curious about the magnesium in it. He already gets the maintenance dose of "Magnesium 5000" pellets, so I don't know if adding this will cause too much Mg in the diet. They are different sources of Mg I believe, but unfortunately U-gard doesn't state the milligram amount, only that it is "3.5%." I know the upper level intake is pretty high for Mg, but I guess it makes me feel a little iffy to not know the exact amounts.
        Save your money on the u-Gard. If your horse responded to Ranitidine, this indicates that there IS an issue in the tummy. Otherwise, it would've done nothing for his appetite.
        "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

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        • #5
          Honestly, pop rocks are easier than ranitidine. You can probably get by with a maintenance doese or even a package every other day.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by flyracing View Post
            That is the worst "study" I've ever read. "The horse receiving the heaping scoop showed the most improvement." Really? One horse received a bigger scoop than the rest... Not to mention there was no control group or anything standardized.
            And it is beyond lame trying to emphasize improved racing performance when there is NO indication of what stage the horses were at in their training cycle. Most ulcers heal eventually, so the fact that the 6 horses showed improvement is not surprising. What they needed was probably 50+ horses in the supplement group, 50+ in a group receiving full-dose omeprazole, and 50+ horses receiving no treatment, all with ulcers documented before treatment at very close to the same grade and all getting an identical diet, management, and exercise.

            Scope before and after, with results of the endoscopy recorded by vets blinded to which group each horse was in.

            Then we could talk about a "study".
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            • Original Poster

              #7
              Originally posted by flyracing View Post
              That is the worst "study" I've ever read. "The horse receiving the heaping scoop showed the most improvement." Really? One horse received a bigger scoop than the rest... Not to mention there was no control group or anything standardized.
              Where was that? From what I saw it said they all got 2 scoops a day?
              Originally posted by rustbreeches
              [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

              Comment

              • Original Poster

                #8
                Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                And it is beyond lame trying to emphasize improved racing performance when there is NO indication of what stage the horses were at in their training cycle. Most ulcers heal eventually, so the fact that the 6 horses showed improvement is not surprising. What they needed was probably 50+ horses in the supplement group, 50+ in a group receiving full-dose omeprazole, and 50+ horses receiving no treatment, all with ulcers documented before treatment at very close to the same grade and all getting an identical diet, management, and exercise.

                Scope before and after, with results of the endoscopy recorded by vets blinded to which group each horse was in.

                Then we could talk about a "study".
                That's why it's called a "field study," like I said in the original title (like a 'let's test this out'). It's not a peer reviewed study (submitted in a journal), I know this. However, I still think that what they found is impressive; that is my opinion.

                Thank you for the opinions! I was mostly wondering if anyone has done a switch like this?
                Last edited by jlphilli; Dec. 6, 2012, 09:16 PM. Reason: typo
                Originally posted by rustbreeches
                [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by jlphilli View Post
                  Where was that? From what I saw it said they all got 2 scoops a day?
                  In the first paragraph...
                  The horse that showed the most dramatic improvement had been given heaping scoops of the product. The other five horses were given measured doses and still showed some improvement.

                  Comment

                  • Original Poster

                    #10
                    Originally posted by hj0519 View Post
                    In the first paragraph...
                    I see it now---down in the middle of the introduction. I had skimmed over to look at the methods and results rather than the summary in the beginning which is why I think I missed it.

                    That aside (which was the horse that showed complete ulcer healing), the others showed massive improvement. I would still say that is impressive regardless, considering prior to the only other "proven" methods of ulcer treatment was expensive omeprazole and/or 3x/day ranitidine. If they can do a real peer reviewed study with real ^ numbers and proper controls to show what combo/dose of this would actually completely heal ulcers, that would be pretty awesome, considering U-gard is dirty cheap. JMO though!
                    Originally posted by rustbreeches
                    [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by jlphilli View Post
                      considering U-gard is dirty cheap. JMO though!
                      Sometimes you get what you pay for, too...
                      "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A field study can still be done well, with some attempt at providing controls. Since ulcers all heal eventually, it's not clear to me that there is anything going on here that couldn't be explained by sumple passage of time. It's not clear that the whole stomachs were scored or just isolated individual ulcers.
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                        • #13
                          Thumbs down for pointing out the obvious...

                          Anyways...seriously...if U-Gard did as good of a job as Ranitidine or Omeprazole, and was PROVEN to heal ulcers, don't you think more people would be using it to treat ulcers since its so cheap?
                          "If you think nobody cares about you, try missing a couple payments..."

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by SuckerForHorses View Post

                            Anyways...seriously...if U-Gard did as good of a job as Ranitidine or Omeprazole, and was PROVEN to heal ulcers, don't you think more people would be using it to treat ulcers since its so cheap?
                            Not if you're thinking about it from the standpoint of a company marketing products to large numbers of consumers with (generally speaking) no real requirement for proof as a group.

                            Ever listen to AM radio? They sell the MOST ridiculous products, with heavy rotations of advertisements and the products are in large part absolutely BOGUS. However, if the product costs $1 per unit to produce, $0.10 per unit to advertise and you sell thousands of them at $5 apiece, you can even offer a MONEY BACK GUARANTEE! (which many, many people will assume to mean the product is "proven") and still come out way ahead, profit-wise. Assuming a placebo effect that hovers around 30% for many health products, the certainty of profit is strong enough that many products are offered for "free" (just pay shipping and handling!) and theh profits are STILL there.

                            Scientific evidence has VERY little to do with the decision to purchase a health-related product for a sizeable majority of people.

                            Which is not to say that the product in question here might not have some benefits, or that the OP is in any way making bad choices. But to bridge this gap for people beginning to be interested in proof and evidence, the nutraceutical industry is putting out "studies" like this, which are certainly an improvment on no evidence at all, but just barely. And there is too much hyperbole and too many leaps of faith in the conclusions of the study in question for my taste.
                            Click here before you buy.

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                            • Original Poster

                              #15
                              @deltawave: I am totally with you on that--I am always a skeptic.

                              My thoughts were due to the fact of my understanding that these forms of calcium and magnesium are true buffers. Knowing that and always having heard that aloe vera juice may have a natural effect similar to that as well, it tipped my curiosity. Since ranitidine essentially buffers stomach acid similar to these forms of calcium and magnesium, and has been shown (clinically in every sense of the word) to heal stomach ulcerations in the appropriate doses, that is what led me to believe that this might actually work---marketing ploys aside

                              Sometimes I do believe that companies will do manipulative things to sell their products. However, I also know first hand how hard it is to jump through every hoop to perform a true clinical trial. That said, I can understand how a company who may be truly passionate about their product or horses in general may want to do something in their capabilities (maybe they aren't able to go through the hoops/fees/regulations?) to try and see if it works. Just playing devil's advocate! I understand 'big pharma,' trust me...but I also understand the 'good guys' who just want to make a difference! That's why I try to form the most educated opinion about whatever it is based on what I know.
                              Last edited by jlphilli; Dec. 7, 2012, 01:42 PM. Reason: typo
                              Originally posted by rustbreeches
                              [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by deltawave View Post
                                A field study can still be done well, with some attempt at providing controls. Since ulcers all heal eventually, it's not clear to me that there is anything going on here that couldn't be explained by sumple passage of time. It's not clear that the whole stomachs were scored or just isolated individual ulcers.
                                I know what you mean! Trust me, it's really easy to pick it apart. I know people get excited about "getting things out there" and not realizing what they forget until the critics get to it--that's the benefit of peer reviewed journals. I know many people in the science field who have done the same thing. I agree controls are always necessary.
                                Originally posted by rustbreeches
                                [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Actually ranitidine is not in ANY way a buffer. It is a histamine blocker, working to reduce production and secretion of acid by the stomach. It is far more similar to omeprazole than it is to a buffer. Omeprazole blocks the proton pump via one mechanism, ranitidine by another. Neither are buffers.
                                  Click here before you buy.

                                  Comment

                                  • Original Poster

                                    #18
                                    Oh right I see---it blocks the production of acid in the stomach. You are right, it does act more like omeprazole (a PPI) rather than a buffer. I suppose though, that continued use of a buffer could in fact do the same thing? I mean, as long as acid isn't being produced (in the case of an H2 blocker or PPI) or being neutralized on a continuous basis in the case of a buffer, that either one would remedy the problem in theory?

                                    ETA--although that does caution me after thinking about it, more so than in the beginning. Although I suppose if it were stacked for the first few days it "in theory" shouldn't cause much of a change--if the buffers in fact did neutralize the acid enough to create an environment that was the same as the reduction caused by the ranitidine in the first place. Hmmmm. Still on the fence...bleh.
                                    Originally posted by rustbreeches
                                    [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      JLPhilli - you can use Ca or Mg buffers in horses with reasonable results, but - and this is a big BUT - they are really only efficacious if you give them every 2 hours, i.e. 12x/day. They're the same as tums: okay if you have mild indigestion after your Saturday Raven's game Chili-Cookoff, but NOT okay for an ulcer!

                                      Stick with your ranitidine, or try an omeprazole product.

                                      In regards to the "study," which I say with dripping disdain, I think a high-school kid wrote that for some kind of science project.

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by Lauren12 View Post
                                        JLPhilli - you can use Ca or Mg buffers in horses with reasonable results, but - and this is a big BUT - they are really only efficacious if you give them every 2 hours, i.e. 12x/day. They're the same as tums: okay if you have mild indigestion after your Saturday Raven's game Chili-Cookoff, but NOT okay for an ulcer!

                                        Stick with your ranitidine, or try an omeprazole product.

                                        In regards to the "study," which I say with dripping disdain, I think a high-school kid wrote that for some kind of science project.
                                        lol ok thanks. I actually did a course of omeprazole over a month at one point and didn't see any difference (in comparison to the ranitidine) at all. As an aside--what do you make of the results with it given twice a day?

                                        At this point he's doing fine, I was just thinking of a cost effective alternative. Another concern I've had is not knowing the effects of long term usage of daily ranitidine. Every vet or pharmacologist I've asked can't give me any definitive answer. I wish there was some supplement or alternative out there that was cheaper and/or more "natural" that could be used to a similar effect.
                                        Originally posted by rustbreeches
                                        [George Morris] doesn't always drink beer, but when he does, he prefers Dos Equis

                                        Comment

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