Re: New to Cushings
The "mods" will chime in momentarily(!--they are awesome) but I wanted to throw out this: has your mare had her insulin & glucose checked to rule out Insulin Resistance? It is a syndrome that can & often does happen simultaneously with Cushings (aka PPID). I have two IR horses, one becomes dull & depressed when her insulin is too high but my younger gelding manifests a completely opposite response: he becomes outright "crazy" when his insulin spikes--paces in field, super anxious, breaks crossties, jigs/kicks out/bucks under tack, farrier/dentist refuse to work on him--now that his IR is controlled with a strict low sugar diet, his demeanor is SO much better. Stands like a pussycat for the farrier, ground ties for grooming, etc. He was almost written off as dangerous & unrideable (he was in New Holland's killpen as a 3yo), and it took four years of journaling to recognize the crazy behavior patterns (grass & grain = bad) before I decided to check his insulin levels, more or less on a hunch, I admit. My vet thought I was crazy to want the tests run but sure enough, two of the three parameters used to diagnose IR were very high (his insulin & leptin levels; the other test being blood glucose levels). I needed to overnight the blood sample to Cornell Univ's lab, as they are the only lab currently offering the leptin test, which is very helpful in determining if IR is a singular problem or a secondary manifestation of another disease process (often Cushings/PPID)
Anyway, you'll very soon receive lots of welcoming responses from this group. I jusy wanted to share my story of my "crazy" horse -- my other horse, the Cushings/PPID one, is very well controlled on 1.5mg/day Prascend(pergolide) so im afraid I cant offer much advice on the vitex. So far mine is doing splendidly on just the low dose pergolide, thank goodness. Eventually she may need adjunct therapies (vitex, etc) so Im very interested in what others in the group have to advise.
Good luck! And welcome to a truly wonderful group!
Kerry in NY
Pinky Sept 2014
Tofurky Nov 2014