Re: Case history for Babe (old horse with PPID)

Lydia Lawson

She is doing well considering her age and PPID. the Precend Pergolide seems to have helped her feel a lot better and stronger, however her hind end weakness/pain still keeps her from getting up if she is not on the bute daily. I tried to wean her down and it was not successful, however so far she has not had any adverse effects from it. It just helps her feel better and at this point in her life that is what matters most. I have her on all the other supplements you and Nancy recommended and she sometimes surprises me when she gallops across the pasture or chases the pony! This is the first year she has not shed well. She is still pretty hairy although she is shedding. Just slow compared to the other horses and it's been hot so I keep an eye on her. She will be getting the first follow up ACTH test this week and I am hopeful that will look somewhat better for her. 

Interestingly enough I have another horse getting the same tests. She is only 10 but after a lifetime of being super sound and healthy she has spent the last year battling abscesses in three of her feet and they have been super difficult to heal requiring aggressive surgery etc. Even though she has no signs outwardly of IR and has never foundered and even has nice tight white lines and good looking feet the vet wants to test her for metabolic problems because we have no answer for why this has happened to her. Hoping it's not something serious. Keeping my fingers crossed!

Re: New bloodwork- please advise


Hi Lavinia. I had the barn owner set out AM & PM rations & weighed them- Flame is getting approximately 10- 13 pounds of Timothy per feeding. We started soaking it today & Flame does not like it but he will get over it. I have ODBTC on the way & will start them as soon as they arrive. I did contact NuZu and will get Stabul 1 ordered. Since it is a hay replacement does that mean that there is no max per day since I'm using it as a "grain" to supplement his hay & beet pulp? His beet pulp is weighed @ 4 pounds dry. I've also been in contact with a rep from Uckele & am considering doing a hair analysis since my hay analysis situation is so hopeless. How do you feel about hair analysis? Thanks for the recommendation on the copper supplement, I will look into it. I am feeling better about Flame's situation. There is still a lot to do- getting the correct feeds into town & getting him switched over but I feel less confused thanks to you & the others who have commented on my post. Thanks!! Beth & Flame NV Oct 2013

Re: ADM Grostrong Mintrate and high Protein to treat IR

Carol Jacoby

Hi Pam,

Keep us posted on the Enrich. I've had more folks try to push this one on me.  I would like to know about the ADM product as I know of some horses who do well on the Staystrong, but they aren't diagnosed IR either.


Re: R.I.P. - Mithrandir's Magik (Alf), July 10, 1987 - April 14, 2014

Ronia Gortsos <rvangage@...>

May your beloved Alf rest peacefully until you meet again.  We are all connected here and our horses and animals watch over us. Keep your memories alive always in your heart. Alfie will be with you always.
Ronia and Angel Dillie Daydream
Sent from Windows Mail




ADM Grostrong Mintrate and high Protein to treat IR

Pamela Bramell

I was asked if I knew anything about a course of high protein being used to treat IR.  In particular, adding Purina Enrich (searched the messages and found out about that) and ADM Grostrong Mintrate.  Apparently some people in a particular area of the country have started using this method to "treat" IR.

Any info on either of these?  I did search the archives for Grostrong Mintrate, but there were no messages. I haven't seen anything about the "high protein" treatment method mentioned, so wanted to ask about that.  Not sure what is meant by "high protein", but the ADM product is 33% protein.  Yikes!

Pam in VA
With Frosty, Story, Butters, Comanche who is at Beech Tree Farm rehabbing from his uncontrolled IR :)  

Re: New bloodwork- please advise

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Beth,

Fasting and mishandling of the blood sample will both cause the values to be LOWER, not higher, than they should be. Glucose is esp sensitive to being left in contact with red blood cells so the values you have are not really useful. As the vet acknowledges that he mishandled the samples, it seems that re-running the tests on "his dime" is in order.

As you say Flame is underweight, he should be receiving a minimum of 2% of his ideal bodyweight in feed per day. I would push for as much hay as he will consume before upping the concentrate portion of his ration. This should be soaked to reduce the sugar/starch content as you do not know whether it is safe to feed to an IR horse or not. Alternatively, upping the amount of ODTB cubes would be safer. As the hay seems to generally be coming from western states could use Arizona Copper complete (available from HorseTech) as a supplement as it's formulated for hays in that general area. Should also have 2000iu vit E in gelcaps with oil, minimum 2 oz plain salt. Horseshine is fine. Is the 4lbs of BP weighed soaked or dry? You need to weigh it dry - the amount of water doesn't count toward the weight. Any more than 1lb needs to be accounted for in the mineral balancing.

Stabul 1 is mineral balanced to ECIR specifications and is tested to be below 10% s/s. It is definitely safer than the TC products. Technically, it could be fed as the entire diet if a horse could not eat long stem forages but that is never the ideal option as horses are designed to eat forage as their primary source of nutrition. It can be ordered by any feed store that is willing to get it in for you - just need to contact Randy Anderson at Nuzu Feed to get the details worked out:

I'll just touch on the trim issues. One of the reasons that the horses in Flame's discipline have short careers is that the trims that are the "standard' are physiologically incorrect. This not only sets the feet up for problems but the rest of the leg and body as well due to the compensatory problems that result.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: Chaste Berry Powde / new question on this topic

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Julie,

Testing in Aril/May will tell you what the the ACTH is during the time of year when it should be at it's lowest. It is good for getting a baseline reading and to monitor whether you may be able to lower pergolide dose during this time vs the dose needed for good control during the seasonal rise period.

Testing in Aug tells you whether the equine is starting it's seasonal rise early or not. If it has started, it gives you a heads up that perg dose needs to start/increase to get/maintain control and prevent other issues from developing (laminitis/founder).

Testing in Oct lets you know where you stand on control during the time of the highest ACTH values. ACTH plateaus, then starts to drop off in normal horses, while PPID ones will tend to top out and maintain that elevated level far longer or may not drop at all.

Part of the answer would depend on why you are using the CTB. If it is to treat known PPID then you would leave the horse on it so you know whether it is doing anything to actually control the disease or not. Stopping the herb/drug would tell you what your values are without any possibly mitigating substances on board. Danger would be if it is controlling any symptoms, those could escalate. Time for withdrawal is unknown but effects of perg are gone in about two weeks so that would seem to be a reasonable time frame.

If CTB was started without any diagnostic testing for PPID then it's murky as you don't know whether there actually is PPID, or whether the CTB is effecting control of PPID, or whether there is early PPID that only shows up during the fall seasonal rise with no current effect from the CTB.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team


Re: 35 Yr old QH mare died August 2013- Question

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Joyce,

So sorry to hear what happened to your girl. There could have been many possible reasons for what happened, with her age a complicating factor in any of them. Unfortunately, at this point all we can do is theorize.

Stopping pergolide abruptly, after 6+ years, was NOT a prudent thing to do. There are many compounding pharmacies that can supply the drug so having a supply issue from one was not an acceptable excuse for not providing life-altering medication. We generally recommend weaning on and/or off the drug to give the system time to acclimate to the hormonal changes. It is possible the sudden cessation of medication caused a "pergolide veil" effect, where horses go off feed, get lethargic, may seem out of it. This is usually a temporary situation that will correct with time but it can take a few days to a few weeks. APF, an adaptogenic formula from Auburn Labs, can be extremely helpful with this.

PPID is a progressive disease so if bloodtesting was not being regularly done to monitor how well/if her pergolide dose was adequately controlling the disease the tumor was likely growing more quickly and when the perg was stopped it was similar to a "last straw" that pushed her over the edge.

August is the beggining of the seasonal rise in the Northern Hemisphere, when all equines have a natural rise in their ACTH to prepare for winter. Because PPID horses generally have an earlier/larger/longer rise it is the most dangerous time of year for them in terms of complications from the elevated ACTH. That she had a voracious appetite before stopping the drug points to her possibly already being under-controlled, or IR in addition to the PPID, and the sudden jump in hormone output in a 35 yo was too much for her system to handle.

Again, sorry for your loss.

Would you please add your general geographic location and year of joining to your future posts as this allows us to help you better and more quickly. Appreciate your help with this.

Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: More advice needed for Babe (old horse with PPID)

Lavinia Fiscaletti

Hi Lydia,

Hope Babe is doing OK.

The reason we recommend NON-Fasting bloodwork is because horses are not designed to be meal fed - they are continuous, trickle feeders whose digestive tract is meant to have food passing thru constantly. The fasting protocols are a holdover from human testing protocols. When fasted, you get falsely low values. If you pull blood after the first "meal" of the day and there was more than 6 hours between that food (even if only low s/s hay) and the previous food there will be an exaggerated insulin spike.  Plus, the proxies that are used to help with the diagnosis were done on non-fasting ponies so want to approximate the same conditions as closely as possible.

Here is the link to Cornell's website. You can look up all the specific info on how much blood is necessary, what tubes, discount shipping labels. You will want to get ACT/Insulin/Leptin as one test and then the glucose is done separately, from another section of the lab.


Lavinia, Dante, George Too and Peanut
Jan 05, RI
EC Support Team

Re: 35 Yr old QH mare died August 2013- Question

Elva J Mico

On 4/16/2014 8:08 AM, wrote:
Hi! My name is Joyce and I just joined the group. I have 3 (of 7)
horses that are IR, but today I wanted to write about my 35 year old
that I lost in August 2013. She had been continuously on liquid
compounded Pergolide for 6+ years. At the time she was euthanized,
she had been without Pergolide for 2 weeks as my vet was unable to
obtain Pergolide from the compounding pharmacy. My mare became
Dear Joyce,
I don't know what really happened however, a vet should certainly know that you don't take a horse off pergolide after 6 and a half years. He should have done something to get the pergolide for her. I think he should take the responsibility for this mare's death. I know that 35 is old for a horse but still, if she was doing fine and he stopped the pergolide because he was unable to obtain it - there is something not right about that. I would probably have strangled my vet had that happened to me. It has been over a year so not much can be done now but I sure would question his reliability.

Elva and Angel Satin

I was a dancer. One night at a gypsy camp, I drank a potion meant for
another and lost my heart to a horse named Satin.

Re: New bloodwork- please advise


Hi Cheryl. Thanks for looking at Flame's info. No he doesn't have arthritis (that I know of) he's on the joint supplements to prevent problems. He does a lot of pounding with all the high trotting & horses that show in the division he shows in usually have short show careers. I have notice that he starts out less stiff since he's been on Move-Ease. Beth & Flame NV Oct 2013

Re: Chaste Berry Powde / new question on this topic


When is the  best time to test for ACTH  in northern hemisphere? and if you are using CTB how long before blood work do you need to take them off so as not to skew the results , or do I need to remove the CTB at all?, I'm  waiting for the optimal time to pull blood on my mare, so as to get the best idea of what is going on with her so I can act accordingly..
Oregon 06

>>>>>>If you are going the Chaste Tree Berry route, make sure you are testing ACTH at minimum in the spring and especially going into the fall for control during seasonal rise.


Re: How to wean off of Thyroid medication


Hi Nancy,
She only gets 1/4 of a teaspoon, what do you mean by going slowly over 6 to 8 weeks?  Do you mean reducing the amount given?

Thank you!
Carla and Cupcake



On Tuesday, April 15, 2014 8:31 PM, "threecatfarm@..." wrote:
Hi Carla

Go slowly over 6 to 8 weeks.  You need to give te thyroid time to adjust back to doing its job.

Nancy C in NH
ECIR Moderator 2003
Learn the facts about IR, PPID, equine nutrition, exercise and the foot.
Check out the FACTS on Facebook
Support the ECIR Group Inc., the nonprofit arm of the ECIR Group

---In EquineCushings@..., wrote :

Cupcake was prescribed Thyroid medication, but has been on a balanced diet since Dec.12 and doing extremely well.

Re: More advice needed for Babe (old horse with PPID)

Lydia Lawson

Another quick question on this topic: I have been looking through the files but I am kind of lost :-/ The vet told me to draw the blood into the purple top tubes. Looks like he just did ACTH and glucose last time and not insulin. I can't find in the files if the insulin test can come from the same draw handled the same way. He wants me to put it on ice and bring it right to the clinic so they can spin and freeze it. Is this the proper thing for all three tests or do I need any different tubes etc? Thank you for your help! I want to get the most accurate results I can.

More advice needed for Babe (old horse with PPID)

Lydia Lawson

Okay it has been a very long time since I gave a report on Babe. If Nancy or Lavinia are reading this I'd like a bit of advice again. She gets a follow up blood test this week. I am trying to remember why they are not supposed to have an overnight fast. Vet said the lab instructions ask for that and he uses Cornell. I draw her myself so I can do it either way but would like to make sure I do it properly to get the best results.

35 Yr old QH mare died August 2013- Question

Joyce Ellis

Hi! My name is Joyce and I just joined the group. I have 3 (of 7) horses that are IR, but today I wanted to write about my 35 year old that I lost in August 2013. She had been continuously on liquid compounded Pergolide for 6+ years. At the time she was euthanized, she had been without Pergolide for 2 weeks as my vet was unable to obtain Pergolide from the compounding pharmacy. My mare became progressively disoriented and confused, and then suddenly one morning she refused to eat. She always had a voracious appetite, but that morning she not only walked away from her feed, but also as I pursued her and tried to coax her to eat, she threw her head away as if I were trying to feed her poison. She refused all feed, even her 'precious' alfalfa mash. After 48 hours of mental confusion and failure to eat, my vet recommended euthanasia.

My question is: Has anyone in the group experienced this sequence of events after Pergolide was discontinued? I wonder if the pituitary gland tumor increased in size and may have caused mental confusion? She was not laminitic and had no other neurological issues. 

Prascend Experiences and Reporting to the FDA

Nancy C

*** Prascend Experiences 

Anxiety is running high over the claim that 1 to 3  mg  of Prascend (average size horse) will work as well as any dose of compounded pergolide. 

The value of this group lies heavily in members reporting their experiences. 

If you have any information to share about Prascend, either dosage related or side effects, good or bad, please send your story to one of the ECIR Group moderators: 

Lorna Cane <briars@...
Jaini Clougher <merlin5clougher@...
Nancy Collins <threecatfarm@...>. 
Eleanor Kellon VMD <drkellon@...

Your file will be uploaded to the Prascend Experiences File. If you prefer to not have your name used, the moderators will protect your identity. 

All members may read about fellow member experiences here

*** Reporting Adverse Reactions and Ineffective Drugs or Supplements to the FDA  

Failure to respond to the recommended dose is an adverse event that should be reported to FDA as a therapeutic failure.  Evidence of failure to respond can be comprised of observation of clinical signs (lack of change in symptoms) or through blood work.

Information on how to contact the FDA may be found here. 

Reports become part of the permanent Adverse Drug Experience records.

Owners, Moderators & Primary Response Teams of the Equine Cushing's and Insulin Resistance Yahoo group

Trouble finding your way around the ECIR Group lists?

Nancy C

There’s so much info here, the links below can help you negotiate the learning curve and find background to questions and issues:

** DDT+E - Diagnosis, Diet, Trim plus Exercise - What is it?

Once at the above page, click on the list to the left for even more detail.

** What blood testing do I need for diagnosis?

** How to get help with Mineral Balancing\

** Table of Contents - searchable document for all the files in three ECIR
Group lists

** Archived Messages - How to Search this treasure trove of information and
history in the NEW NEO format

** Moving OT Topic to sister or related lists

** Current Case History filing cabinet accepting new member info

Links to ALL Case History Sites  (Scroll down to  Links to ECIR History Sites.pdf)

Owners, Moderators & Primary Response Teams of the Equine Cushing's and Insulin Resistance Yahoo group

Re: R.I.P. - Mithrandir's Magik (Alf), July 10, 1987 - April 14, 2014

Cindy McGinley

     I am very touched by the outpouring of grief and love and compassion that Alf’s death has brought forth, here and elsewhere. He had quite the fan base. I just want to thank you all for your condolences. You are wonderful people.
     We are going to be okay.
Cindy & Alf’s Entourage (Dare, Saffron, Deirdre, & Ted) in NY
May 2006

Re: New bloodwork- please advise


Hi Beth,
I just took a quick peek at your case history and would definitely  agree with the great advice you've been offered so far.  Curious, does Flame have arthritis?  Just wondering why he's on all those joint sups.
CHeryl in MA
Jan. 2004
EC list support

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