Re: Heart condition


Hi Rebecca,
My now 24 1/2 year old Arabian mare Millionairess was diagnosed with 3rd degree heart block and arrhythmia 2 months before her 17th birthday. She fell over in the pasture one day, got back up, but she was in a daze and unaware of her surroundings. Luckily I was at home to observe it and my vet came right out. I thought it was something neurological like EPM, which horse get here from opposums, and was completely surprised that the collapse was cardiac in nature.

Her first pacemaker was implanted the next week and her second one four years later. Mill is no longer ridden on the advice of the head equine vet at the university hospital as she still had episodes of collapse for several months until we got the pacemaker setting adjusted. It had been set to kick in if her heart did not beat but the sensing didn't always go through. Now she is on permanent pacing so it beats even if her heart does on its own. The battery drains faster but at least there are no more terrifying collapses.

Mill's diagnosis of PPID/IR was not until four years after her first pacemaker implant. Looking back, I think she may have had the disease a year or so before we caught it. Managing her pacemaker is a walk in the park compared to the constant adjustment for PPID/IR. The procedure was expensive, but not as bad as it could have been since the vet school hospital had never done it on a horse and gave us a discount for the learning experience. We elected to leave the arrhythmia alone as sometimes the treatment can cause more problems. So far it hasn't affected her career as a pasture ornament.

Jennifer & Mill in TN
Jan 2011

--- In EquineCushings@..., Rebecca Marment <r_marment@...> wrote:

Hi all

I just wondered if anyone knew if PPID can cause heart conditions, and if so, would the heart condition resolve once on pergolide?
Rebecca and Hutch
September 2012

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