Susan Piscopo, DVM, PhD

Puberty in Thoroughbreds

Puberty is a transitional period for horses, from a time of reproductive immaturity to a time where sexual behavior is demonstrated and sperm is ready for release in the colt, and the filly starts to cycle. Unfortunately, very little information is available about puberty in horses, including at what age and what weight most horses reach this important li...

Fractures in Thoroughbred Racehorses

Musculoskeletal injury is the most common cause of lost training days for Thoroughbred racehorses. This type of injury, particularly fractures, is also cited as a major reason horses leave the industry. But the incidence and characteristics of fractures in racing Thoroughbreds are not well understood.

Characterizing fractures was the aim of Kristi...

Efficacy of Common Anti-Ulcer Medications in Racehorses

Gastric ulcers are so common in racing horses that many equine practitioners maintain their racing patients on anti-ulcer medications to prevent and treat gastric ulcers. Reports in the literature place the percentage of racing horses in training with endoscopically visible gastric ulcers at grater than 80%. Unfortunately, despite the variety of anti-u...

Fatigue in Racehorses

While visibly obvious, fatigue is hard to quantify. Electromyography (EMG) measures conduction along nerves in a particular muscle group--as muscle fibers fatigue, EMG signals shift from high to low. Taking EMG readings during galloping is unreliable, however, because signals are susceptible to inaccuracies from lead changes. Kinematics is another eval...

Laryngeal Paralysis

Partial paralysis of the larynx prevents maximal opening of the equine trachea. Affected horses can move air, but breathing noises occur, especially during exercise. The most common form of laryngeal paralysis is recurrent laryngeal neuropathy (RLN), which involves degeneration of the recurrent laryngeal nerve. The cause of RLN is unknown, but it seems...

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