Owner survey of headshaking in horses

John E Madigan, Stephanie A. Bell

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

51 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective - To determine signalment, history, clinical signs, duration, seasonality, and response to various treatments reported by owners for headshaking in horses. Design - Owner survey. Animals - 109 horses with headshaking. Procedure - Owners of affected horses completed a survey questionnaire. Results - 78 affected horses were geldings, 29 were mares, and 2 were stallions. Mean age of onset was 9 years. Headshaking in 64 horses had a seasonal component, and for most horses, headshaking began in spring and ceased in late summer or fall. The most common clinical signs were shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting like an insect was flying up the nostril, snorting excessively, rubbing the muzzle on objects, having an anxious expression while headshaking, worsening of clinical signs with exposure to sunlight, and improvement of clinical signs at night. Treatment with antihistamines, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, antimicrobials, fly control, chiropractic, and acupuncture had limited success. Sixty-one horses had been treated with cyproheptadine; 43 had moderate to substantial improvement. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Headshaking may have many causes. A large subset of horses have similar clinical signs including shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting as if an insect were flying up the nostrils, and rubbing the muzzle on objects. Seasonality and worsening of clinical signs with exposure to light are also common features of this syndrome. Geldings and Thoroughbreds appear to be overrepresented. Cyproheptadine treatment was beneficial in more than two thirds of treated horses.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)334-337
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Volume219
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2001

Fingerprint

Horses
horses
cyproheptadine
Cyproheptadine
geldings
Insects
flight
Head
antihistamines
acupuncture
Surveys and Questionnaires
Chiropractic
insects
Sunlight
nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents
Histamine Antagonists
Acupuncture
adrenal cortex hormones
stallions
Age of Onset

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)

Cite this

Owner survey of headshaking in horses. / Madigan, John E; Bell, Stephanie A.

In: Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Vol. 219, No. 3, 01.08.2001, p. 334-337.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

@article{b35db1d3113f4332873fb309a19ed724,
title = "Owner survey of headshaking in horses",
abstract = "Objective - To determine signalment, history, clinical signs, duration, seasonality, and response to various treatments reported by owners for headshaking in horses. Design - Owner survey. Animals - 109 horses with headshaking. Procedure - Owners of affected horses completed a survey questionnaire. Results - 78 affected horses were geldings, 29 were mares, and 2 were stallions. Mean age of onset was 9 years. Headshaking in 64 horses had a seasonal component, and for most horses, headshaking began in spring and ceased in late summer or fall. The most common clinical signs were shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting like an insect was flying up the nostril, snorting excessively, rubbing the muzzle on objects, having an anxious expression while headshaking, worsening of clinical signs with exposure to sunlight, and improvement of clinical signs at night. Treatment with antihistamines, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, antimicrobials, fly control, chiropractic, and acupuncture had limited success. Sixty-one horses had been treated with cyproheptadine; 43 had moderate to substantial improvement. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Headshaking may have many causes. A large subset of horses have similar clinical signs including shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting as if an insect were flying up the nostrils, and rubbing the muzzle on objects. Seasonality and worsening of clinical signs with exposure to light are also common features of this syndrome. Geldings and Thoroughbreds appear to be overrepresented. Cyproheptadine treatment was beneficial in more than two thirds of treated horses.",
author = "Madigan, {John E} and Bell, {Stephanie A.}",
year = "2001",
month = "8",
day = "1",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "219",
pages = "334--337",
journal = "Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association",
issn = "0003-1488",
publisher = "American Veterinary Medical Association",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Owner survey of headshaking in horses

AU - Madigan, John E

AU - Bell, Stephanie A.

PY - 2001/8/1

Y1 - 2001/8/1

N2 - Objective - To determine signalment, history, clinical signs, duration, seasonality, and response to various treatments reported by owners for headshaking in horses. Design - Owner survey. Animals - 109 horses with headshaking. Procedure - Owners of affected horses completed a survey questionnaire. Results - 78 affected horses were geldings, 29 were mares, and 2 were stallions. Mean age of onset was 9 years. Headshaking in 64 horses had a seasonal component, and for most horses, headshaking began in spring and ceased in late summer or fall. The most common clinical signs were shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting like an insect was flying up the nostril, snorting excessively, rubbing the muzzle on objects, having an anxious expression while headshaking, worsening of clinical signs with exposure to sunlight, and improvement of clinical signs at night. Treatment with antihistamines, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, antimicrobials, fly control, chiropractic, and acupuncture had limited success. Sixty-one horses had been treated with cyproheptadine; 43 had moderate to substantial improvement. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Headshaking may have many causes. A large subset of horses have similar clinical signs including shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting as if an insect were flying up the nostrils, and rubbing the muzzle on objects. Seasonality and worsening of clinical signs with exposure to light are also common features of this syndrome. Geldings and Thoroughbreds appear to be overrepresented. Cyproheptadine treatment was beneficial in more than two thirds of treated horses.

AB - Objective - To determine signalment, history, clinical signs, duration, seasonality, and response to various treatments reported by owners for headshaking in horses. Design - Owner survey. Animals - 109 horses with headshaking. Procedure - Owners of affected horses completed a survey questionnaire. Results - 78 affected horses were geldings, 29 were mares, and 2 were stallions. Mean age of onset was 9 years. Headshaking in 64 horses had a seasonal component, and for most horses, headshaking began in spring and ceased in late summer or fall. The most common clinical signs were shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting like an insect was flying up the nostril, snorting excessively, rubbing the muzzle on objects, having an anxious expression while headshaking, worsening of clinical signs with exposure to sunlight, and improvement of clinical signs at night. Treatment with antihistamines, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, corticosteroids, antimicrobials, fly control, chiropractic, and acupuncture had limited success. Sixty-one horses had been treated with cyproheptadine; 43 had moderate to substantial improvement. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Headshaking may have many causes. A large subset of horses have similar clinical signs including shaking the head in a vertical plane, acting as if an insect were flying up the nostrils, and rubbing the muzzle on objects. Seasonality and worsening of clinical signs with exposure to light are also common features of this syndrome. Geldings and Thoroughbreds appear to be overrepresented. Cyproheptadine treatment was beneficial in more than two thirds of treated horses.

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0035431196&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0035431196&partnerID=8YFLogxK

M3 - Article

C2 - 11497047

AN - SCOPUS:0035431196

VL - 219

SP - 334

EP - 337

JO - Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

JF - Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

SN - 0003-1488

IS - 3

ER -