Following on from two previous successful campaigns, the national “Talk About Laminitis” disease awareness initiative is back for a third year.

Running until the end of October, the campaign aims to drive awareness among horse owners that equine metabolic syndrome (EMS) or equine Cushing’s disease (PPID) may be at the root of up to 90% of laminitis cases.
Over the past two years, the Boehringer Ingelheim initiative has generated valuable data from more than 15,000 cases that have been tested for PPID by measuring basal adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). 
The research has confirmed PPID is not just a disease of veteran animals – indeed, where vets have a clinical suspicion, more than a third of 10 to 15-year-olds tested positive for PPID. 
On univariable analysis, the clinical signs that represented a significant increased risk for being PPID positive were current and/or previous history of laminitis, hypertrichosis and/or abnormal moulting, and supraorbital fat and muscle wastage. 
Veterinary epidemiologist at the Animal Health Trust, Jo Ireland, commented on the relevance of this data: “The ACTH results from more than 15,000 horses and ponies are from the vet-visited population in the UK.
“This means the results are highly significant for UK vets and reflect the clinical signs that are being observed in practice.”
During the “Talk About Laminitis” disease awareness initiative – which is supported by Redwings, the British Horse Society and World Horse Welfare – Boehringer will once again be offering free ACTH laboratory tests for horse owners. 
To participate in the scheme, veterinary surgeons and horse owners can download ACTH blood test vouchers from www.talkaboutlaminitis.co.uk 
Then attach the voucher to the ACTH sample submission form and the ACTH laboratory fees will be charged to the sponsors of the scheme.
“Talk About Laminitis” will also be sponsoring an important new veterinary advice series – Vet Essentials – on Horse & Country TV, focusing on the most commonly encountered and debilitating equine diseases – laminitis, PPID and colic.
Due to premiere in July, the three-part series will follow Horse & Country TV’s Jenny Rudall as she investigates each condition.

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