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6 month pregnant mare aborted

Equine-Reproduction.com Bulletin Board » Abortion and Pregnancy Loss » 6 month pregnant mare aborted « Previous Next »


Author Message
 

Michele
Nursing Foal
Username: Mich

Post Number: 15
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Monday, June 12, 2006 - 02:40 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

Hi Jos, Apologies that this will be long. Re. my questions under 'General Mare' on the same subject, I immediately took the entire foetus and placenta to the university lab where they are carrying out bacteriology, some virus stains (for Rhinopneumonitis) and doing a pm as per your suggestion.
I am doubly concerned now because the other pregnant mare started shows signs of lethargy yesterday evening although she is still eating, temp is 37.2C and she has no discharge.

Upon speaking to a few vets, they reckon it could be Rhino as it's only the pregnant mares who seem to be affected. They can't tell me if it's common or not when I tell them there's no temp or nasal discharge to make me have suspected Rhino.
There are 6 horses in total on the property and I've never even had a runny nose amongst them. They are not stabled, but blanketed in winter and in very spacious paddocks with top quality feed and hay.
Because the pregnancy was so important, we haven't allowed any horses off and back on the property for 3 years while we've been breeding this mare. No outside mares are accepted for coverings either and no outsiders are allowed to touch the horses.
The weak link in the chain is the only new horse to enter the property was a yearling filly imported from the USA, and she arrived on my farm 16 days ago after 30 days isolation in the US and 30 days in quarantine here.
It was 11 days post her arrival when the first mare started looking miserable and the next day her discharge started. I have the yearling in isolation well away from the pregnant mares and all her paraphenalia is kept in a separate place to the other horses. I didn't suspect anything when she arrived, I simply decided to keep her in isolation for a couple of months until I could be sure she wasn't 'harbouring' anything that could be detrimental to the 2 mares.

I don't have any experience with Rhino at all, and hopefully the pm will give conclusive results though the pathologist told me 8/10 yield no results(?!).
My questions are,
1. if the foetus doesn't give any clues as to the cause, who and how do I test for Rhino just incase?
2. I read somewhere that taking blood is not accurate, but that blood and scrapings from the back of the throat have to be taken. Is this correct and where exactly is the blood taken? What sort of test is then carried out and how succesful is it?
3. Inoculation for Rhino (Pneumabort K)should be given at 5,7&9 months. The mare who aborted was at 6 months and if I had given the shot surely she would still not have been protected?
I might be jumping the gun here assuming the worst, and hopefully the test will show it's definitely not Rhino, but should it be I need to deal with it effectively asap.
4. Carriers: could the imported filly be a Carrier? How long can a horse carry this virus for? If so, do they always have it and can it flare up on a regular basis when under stress? What do I do when I want to breed her in a few years?
I cannot understand why Rhino isn't a notifiable disease because it sounds incredibly dangerous and devastating, more so if you are ignorant about it.
Any help is GREATLY appreciated. Thank You very much.
 

Jos
Board Administrator
Username: Jos

Post Number: 10782
Registered: 10-1999
Posted on Tuesday, June 13, 2006 - 11:07 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

I think before commenting on the questions in particular, it is going to save some explanation by explaining that there are several strains of Rhino. EHV-1 which is the "abortion strain" (the respiratory strain is commonly EHV-4) quite often will not be accompanied by any signs in the mare herself, and indeed, the mare may have been exposed a couple of months previously and is carrying a latent condition that subsequently surfaces in the form of an abortion. Immunization with the correct vaccine (Pneumabort-K or Prodigy in the USA) is required at 5, 7 and 9 months as a minimum, and 3 and 11 months (if the mare has not yet foaled) in high-risk situations (such as boarding barns, competition horses etc.) It is also important that you know that the virus can be carried on clothing and utensils, so even though your horses may not have come into contact with infected animals, if you have, then you may have taken the virus back to them. The good news (if it can be considered good) is that the indications of an abortion due to EHV-1 are usually very apparent in a necropsy. Actually, I think that I probably have covered all your questions...

There are other causes of infectious abortion that will need to be considered as well, and may be identified in the necropsy. One that springs to mind is EVA (equine viral arteritis).

As far as these not being notifiable diseases, in some countries they are, but one of the unfortunate sequela of a large and fragmented horse industry seen in the US is resistance among many owners to "regulation" and the ability to track animal movements. The discussion to be found elsewhere on this board concerning the issuance of UELN's (universal equine life numbers) is an interesting demonstration of this.
 

Michele
Nursing Foal
Username: Mich

Post Number: 17
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Monday, June 26, 2006 - 12:56 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The pathologist called on Friday to say that the bacterial and viral tests came back negative for EHV1 and no clinical signs could be found on the foetus. He is 99.9% sure it wasn't EHV1. I have been told however by someone else that it would be a good idea to test the two mares and yearling - what is the most reliable test for EHV1? If a horse is a "carrier" is it possible to get a reliable positive test?

How long can drawn blood remain viable? Blood was only tested 10 days after drawn for hormone levels. Will this time lapse affect the results? The results were:

Test = Progesterone
Result = 0.39
Units = nmol/l
Test = Estrone-Sulphate
Result = 3.68
Units = ng/ml
Interpretation = Both the Progesterone and Estrone-Sulphate levels are very low for a 6 month pregnant mare.

If the foetus was about to die or already dead when the blood was drawn how would that affect the hormone levels?

Many thanks again.
 

Michele
Nursing Foal
Username: Mich

Post Number: 18
Registered: 02-2006
Posted on Friday, July 07, 2006 - 10:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post    Move Post (Moderator/Admin Only)

The pathologist called on Friday to say that the bacterial and viral tests came back negative for EHV1 and no clinical signs could be found on the foetus. He is 99.9% sure it wasn't EHV1. I have been told however by someone else that it would be a good idea to test the two mares and yearling - what is the most reliable test for EHV1? If a horse is a "carrier" is it possible to get a reliable positive test?

How long can drawn blood remain viable? Blood was only tested 10 days after drawn for hormone levels. Will this time lapse affect the results? The results were:

Test = Progesterone
Result = 0.39
Units = nmol/l
Test = Estrone-Sulphate
Result = 3.68
Units = ng/ml
Interpretation = Both the Progesterone and Estrone-Sulphate levels are very low for a 6 month pregnant mare.

If the foetus was about to die or already dead when the blood was drawn how would that affect the hormone levels?

Many thanks again.



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