Cushings? - Page 2

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    11-14-2010, 09:36 AM
I've heard Chasteberry's (ground) are as close to a cure for Cushings as can be... alot cheaper too. I believe you add a tblspn daily to feed...

Google it and find all the information you can
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    11-15-2010, 02:27 PM
I have a neighbor with a 20 year old mustang..and after the property between us was sold to someone new by mutual agreement (because the new neighbors love animals and love watching mine) we opened our gates between 3 also gave the neighbor on the other side buddies for his mustang mare, she was going downhill. She loves my horses and wonders of wonders they take care of her (mine are only ages 5 and 10). Her feet were in bad shape but now uses my farrier, she was seriously foundered but thru regular trims and watching her diet we've made great headway in correcting that..but there still was something. So I had heard of cushings before and when the mustang didnt shed this summer like normal I talked it over with my neighbor (this mustang was purchased to became a buddy for their older gelding years ago who has long since passed), and giving him the info we are treating her as we would if she had cushings. We ordered the chasteberry which is recommended on several websites, also recommended he put her on a joint supplement MSM because she is is also not moving as smoothly. She is on 2 teaspoons of chasteberry a day, the MSM, and recommended the neighbor keep her off the pasture every night and only let her graze during the day..also cut her grain down to not even a handful (changed from sweet feed to pellet). She has been on this for 2 weeks and the neighbor has caught sight of her running again with my horses. She is definitely not 100 percent but from a month ago what a improvement.
    11-15-2010, 10:11 PM
Wow that's cool!

I think I'm going to pass on this one, but I'm going to keep an eye out for another older horse.
    11-16-2010, 02:32 AM
In the circle of DVM's that I work with, the most successful medication used in the treatment of cushings syndrome seems to be Trilostane. Anyone here used it in their horses? I would assume the efficacy would be equally beneficial in equine as in K9.
    11-16-2010, 03:15 AM
Trilostane is FDA approved for dogs which makes it's use in horses extralabel. This is not a problem because Pergolide is also extra label. The real issue is that Trilostane can have affects on mineralocorticoids too (aldosterone which regulates sodium and potassium) and can also necrose the adrenal gland sending the animal into addisonian crisis (eg HYPOadrenocorticism vs HYPER which = cushings).

Cushings in dogs and horses is not the same thing and is starting to be recognised as part of a complex rather than a simple disease. It more appropriately is referred to as Pars Pituitary Intermedia Dysfunction. In dogs it is the pars distalis which is affected. This is why pergolide which is a dopamine agaonist, can be used. It simply decreases the levels of ACTH and therefore the glucocorticoid levels without the severe side effects trilostane can have.

In a nutshell, trilostane is used in dogs because it is our best option. It has side effects but they are easily monitored and more cost effective in dogs. In horses Pergolide is a safer alternative with much fewer side effects.

As far as chasteberry is concerned, my main issue with that is that as a neutriceutical there is zero regulation on it, so even if it DOES work you have no way of controlling how much of the effective agent your animal gets from bottle to bottle (as there are always natural variations in plants, etc.) For me, I would rather treat with something that is delivering a controlled amount with known side effects, especially for something as serious as an endocrine disorder.
    11-16-2010, 10:36 PM
"No adverse side effects were reported in any horse taking trilostane. In addition, trilostane therapy altered endocrine testing results to normal levels. Therefore, it appears that trilostane could be a useful, safe drug for treating ECS."
Susan Piscopo, DVM, PhD

Just read an article on Trilostane in Horses. It was a bit long but this was the last bit of the final paragraph of the study. (2004)
    11-16-2010, 10:51 PM
Sorry, not rying to hi-jack your thread here but, how do you know if your horse has Cushings? My boy Jake doesn't sead very much in the summer and is frequently going lame. He is just a pasture ornament as of the past year or so. I think he part icelandic though, could that have anything to do with the shedding, or lack thereof?
    11-16-2010, 10:57 PM
Have you had your vet out to test?
    11-16-2010, 11:08 PM
No, I didn't know there was such a disease. I have always wondered why he didn't shed but the vet has never mentioned anything whenever he has come out for shots and stuff.
    11-16-2010, 11:11 PM
Originally Posted by Oxer    
"No adverse side effects were reported in any horse taking trilostane. In addition, trilostane therapy altered endocrine testing results to normal levels. Therefore, it appears that trilostane could be a useful, safe drug for treating ECS."
Susan Piscopo, DVM, PhD

Just read an article on Trilostane in Horses. It was a bit long but this was the last bit of the final paragraph of the study. (2004)

Yeah, 2004. It's a newer drug, these things always take time to show up after clinical trials and once it is more widely used in the population. There have been some reports since then and the efficacy also isn't as good as Pergolide as well as the mineralocorticoid effects. Ha, this thread happened to catch me the week I have a clinical pharmacology exam on cushings treatments. The literature is fresh in my mind!

As far as diagnosis- there is a test you can do (a few actually). Icelandics are prone to Equine Metabolic Syndrome. The best test for this is a combined glucose-insulin test. Your vet can run it and it is pretty cheap and easy to do. Ask them about it, but if they have been out of school for a while they may not know about EMS, it is a fairly recently characterized syndrome but has some very solid evidence behind it. I'd recommend staring with a search on to educate yourself a bit more on it. Good luck.

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