Horse with EPM - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 4 Old 06-23-2009, 08:44 PM Thread Starter
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Red face Horse with EPM

I have an horse with EPM that I have been treating with Karbo Kombo for about two months now. He has an abscess on his head. I have contacted Dr. Smith the Doc who developed the Karbo Kombo who stated that this was normal because this is how the parasite gets out of the horses system. Has anyone else had a horse with EPM and had an abscess show up on their horse?
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post #2 of 4 Old 06-23-2009, 09:13 PM
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EPM is caused by a protozoa that infects the horse's cetral nervous system. When the protozoa die, the waste is carried out of the central nervous system by the blood. The blood is cleaned by the liver, and the waste and toxins end up in the manure.

I had had two horses with EPM, neither of which has ever had an abcess on the head.

How was the horse diagnosed? There are currently four blood tests that are recognized as appropriate to diagnose EPM, along with a neurological exam, and ruling out other diseases. All three of parts are necessary for a diagnosis of EPM. I would recommend the IFAT test through UC Davis. If your horse doesn't have EPM, you are wasting a lot of money for treatments that he doesn't need.

The horse's immune system is supressed, and that is why horses get EPM. Products that help the immune system help the horse. BUT... Any treatment for EPM must do two things. First, it must cross the blood-brain barrier to kill the protozoa in the central nervous system. Second, it must be able to enter cells to kill the protozoa that live within the horse's individual cells. Any remedy for EPM that doesn't do those two things will not kill the infection.

I would recommend you visit to find the latest information on EPM. Yes, I am biased, I created the site. The information on the site comes from university clinical trails, and EPM researchers.

Please help your horse by spending some time reading about EPM.

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post #3 of 4 Old 06-23-2009, 10:02 PM
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Do what EPM horse said, but I would like to add that when a horse at my barn was diagnosed with EPM, I researched and found that foods high in Vitamin E can slow the progression to the central nervous system. Feed your horse Wheat Germ Oil and if your horse won't take that, dry roasted almonds are the next best thing (I'm not talking treatment, this will only help, not stop it/cure it)
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post #4 of 4 Old 06-24-2009, 07:34 PM
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EPMhorse is right on the money. I would be very very skeptical about this vet and his so-called treatment for EPM. The parasites do not leave the body via an abcess. And an abcess on his head would indicate that he possibly had a traumatic accident involving that area of his head. I would highly recommend that you seek a second opinion on your horse. If your horse does have EPM, Karbo Kombo is NOT a treatment (read their website--it states that their products are not designed to cure/treat disease!) and if it's not EPM your horse has a medical condition that continues to go untreated.

Please read about EPM via which is veterinarian approved medical updates on horse health issues.
The Horse | EPM Diagnosis EPM Diagnosis
The Horse | Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis (EPM): Debunking the Myths EPM--Debunking the Myths
The Horse | EPM Treatment EPM Treatment

As for Vit E, it does NOT slow the progression of the disease. It is however used to help with recovery because it is used in the repair of nervous tissue.

Cindy D.
Licensed Veterinary Technician
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