Tracheal collapse in American Miniature Horses: 13 cases (1985-2007)

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20 Scopus citations


Objective - To describe the clinical and laboratory findings, diagnostic features, and outcome of tracheal collapse in American Miniature Horses at a referral institution. Design - Retrospective case series. Animals - 13 American Miniature Horses with tracheal collapse. Procedures - Medical records of American Miniature Horses with tracheal collapse at a referral hospital were reviewed. Data extracted included signalment, history, clinical signs, laboratory data, diagnostic procedures, outcome, and histologic findings. Results - Tracheal collapse was documented in 5.6% of American Miniature Horses admitted to this referral hospital. Median age at onset of clinical signs was 11 years with a range of 2 to 15 years. Common complaints and clinical signs included respiratory distress, tachypnea, inspiratory honking noises, and increased abdominal expiratory effort, which were exacerbated by stressful events, pregnancy, exercise, a dusty environment, and eating. Tracheal collapse was confirmed by use of radiography, endoscopy, fluoroscopy, or postmortem examination. Dorsoventral flattening of the extra- or intrathoracic trachea, or both, was more common than lateral collapse. Tracheal chondromalacia was identified histologically in 4 cases, and mortality rate for affected horses was 10 of 13. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance - Tracheal collapse was relatively common in this study of American Miniature Horses, and outcome was poor. The etiopathogenesis of the disease remains unknown.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1302-1306
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number8
StatePublished - Oct 15 2008

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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