Risk Factors for Atypical Myopathy

Aggressive research efforts by Belgian veterinarians have culminated in the identification of numerous indicators or factors–including horse management and pasture characteristics–associated with atypical myopathy, a rapidly developing and fatal di
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Aggressive research efforts by Belgian veterinarians have culminated in the identification of numerous indicators or factors–including horse management and pasture characteristics–associated with atypical myopathy, a rapidly developing and fatal disease that destroys skeletal muscles.

"Atypical myopathy is sporadically seen in grazing horses in the United Kingdom and other European countries such as Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, and Switzerland, among others," reported Dominique Votion, DVM, PhD, from the Equine European Centre of Mont-le-Soie and Department of Clinical Sciences at the University of Liège in Belgium.

Typical signs of atypical myopathy include sudden onset of muscle weakness, stiffness, horses that are recumbent and unable to rise, and the production of dark colored urine.

Since atypical myopathy is typically fatal and no treatment or specific disease prevention strategies are currently available, the goal of this study was to identify risk factors for atypical myopathy to potentially identify ways to limit the development of the disease

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Written by:

Stacey Oke, MSc, DVM, is a practicing veterinarian and freelance medical writer and editor. She is interested in both large and small animals, as well as complementary and alternative medicine. Since 2005, she’s worked as a research consultant for nutritional supplement companies, assisted physicians and veterinarians in publishing research articles and textbooks, and written for a number of educational magazines and websites.

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