Vitex/Chasteberry study #Vitex_CHB_Chasteberry


Eleanor Kellon, VMD
 

This is a study from 2013 now available in full on the internet file:///C:/Users/drkel/AppData/Local/Temp/Use_of_the_chasteberry_preparation_CorticosalR_for-1.pdf . They looked at horses and ponies on Vitex only, Vitex + pergolide and pergolide only. I haven't read it in depth yet but one thing they found, as we have, is that  Vitex added to pergolide improves the coat. However,  horses on Vitex alone or Vitex + pergolide had much higher ACTH heading into seasonal rise than horses on pergolide only. Take home message is use Vitex with caution in combination with pergolide. It may block the effects on ACTH.
--
Eleanor in PA

www.drkellon.com 
EC Owner 2001


chemelle
 

Thank you for this!
I recently added the chasteberry (evitex) to improve shedding and I think Andy already has a very pronounced seasonal rise.
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Chemelle
Hillsboro, OR
2019
https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Chemelle%20and%20Andy 

https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/album?id=94380


 

This link to the article,  Use of the Chasteberry Preparation Corticosal® for the Treatment of Pituitary Pars Intermedia Dysfunction in Horses,  works for me. 
--
Cass, Sonoma Co., CA 2012
ECIR Group Moderator
Cayuse and Diamond Case History Folder                
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Sue Ring
 

Hey Cass,

I am not very "scientifically" oriented, but after reading this article (and have you also say you are using the vitex/Pergolide combo) are you getting better results with the combination??  Someone recently recommended I add 1/2 - 1 tbsp of the herb to my horse's daily ration, along with his prescribed Pergolide.  They said it gives added support to suppressing the tumor.  Thanks for any additional information you can give!!
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Sue R in NC 2021

CASE HISTORY:  https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Sue%20and%20Shifty


 


 

Hi, Sue. 
I'm not scientifically oriented either. I do use the combination, or I should say, I have used both pergolide and vitex/ CTB, until today! I've seen no evidence vitex/ CTB surpresses the adenoma. That's not my belief, and that was never the reason for my use of vitex/CTB and pergolide. The best evidence I've seen is that dosing our horses with sufficient pergolide to keep ACTH in the high teens is the optimal management of PPID over the long term.

You can read in detail about the use of vitex in treating PPID at ECIRhorse.org, about half way down the page, under Alternative Therapies.
https://www.ecirhorse.org/treatment-ppid.php  Short version: in early PPID, vitex may offer some relief of symptoms, but vitex doesn't reliably control abnormal hormones produced by the pituitary adenoma or the growth of the adenoma itself. In fact, the evidence is that vitex/ CTB does not suppress the adenoma.

Many members here with PPID horses use both pergolide and vitex/ CTB when pergolide alone doesn't facilitate shedding of the Cushings coat. For Cayuse, the combination facilitates some shedding but more specifically, stops the regrowth of her Cushings coat until I stop vitex/CTB in the fall. Now that I've read the article, I won't risk the possibility of higher ACTH for the convenience of not needing to body clip my PPID horse several times a year.  I'm not going to bet against Dr Kellon's caution that vitex might interfere or interact with pergolide.
--
Cass, Sonoma Co., CA 2012
ECIR Group Moderator
Cayuse and Diamond Case History Folder                
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Sherry Morse
 

Hi Sue,

PPID is a progressive disease and the treatment for it is pergolide.  CTB has not - to my recollection - ever been proven to do anything beyond helping PPID horses shed out.  I would ask the person who said this where they got that information.




Sue Ring
 

Thank you, Sherry!  I am going to send along the link to the info. on Dr. Kellon's recent research to her.  With information changing all the time and being so varied, it's important that we all have the best of it and I think Dr. Kellon provides that!!!
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Sue R in NC 2021

CASE HISTORY:  https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Sue%20and%20Shifty


 


Sue Ring
 

Thanks Cass!!  I will save my money!!  No need to load them up on unneeded supplements or supplements that may cause harm.  My horse is on Pergolide, so that's good.  As of yet, I have had no problem with the shedding....his coat has been pretty normal and he has had no problem with shedding out this Spring.  I think I was on this early and hopefully have done him some good by testing and starting Pergolide therapy according to the test results!!  In these early stages of treatment, how often do you re-test to be sure that the Pergolide is working to reduce ACTH?
--
Sue R in NC 2021

CASE HISTORY:  https://ecir.groups.io/g/CaseHistory/files/Sue%20and%20Shifty


 


 
Edited

Hi, Sue. 
After you learn all the subtle and not-so-subtle signs of uncontrolled PPID, you can decide to check ACTH, insulin and glucose based on your observations.

The best time to test, assuming Shifty is comfortable and doing well on his current dose, is before the seasonal rise really gets going, in late June or very early July. That's early enough to check that his ACTH and insulin levels are within normal ranges and, if not, quickly make adjustments to his pergolide dose before the seasonal rise really ramps up. The collective experience here is that increasing pergolide dose before the seasonal rise works much better than chasing out-of-control PPID in September or October. Learning to monitor the symptoms of uncontrolled PPID will help you through this.

Read about the seasonal rise and its annual effect on ACTH here: https://www.ecirhorse.org/seasonal-rise.php If you like to read charts, you can see the how the seasonal rise increases  ACTH week by week: https://www.thelaminitissite.org/ppid-faq/acth-interpretation 

With a newly diagnosed PPID horses, it's a learning experience to manage pergolide dosage during the seasonal rise. It's common for horses to need an additional 1-1 ½ mg of pergolide (or more!) to keep ACTH from an exaggerated increase August through November. If you see signs that PPID is not well controlled during the rise (or any time of year!), increased urination, lethargy, depression, muscle loss, more of a pot belly, and especially if Shifty becomes tender footed, it's wise to check ACTH, insulin and glucose.  And even if PPID seemed well controlled, I've seen bruising at the toe during trims in early January or hoof abscesses, indicating uncontrolled insulin some time within the previous few month. We become really alert to the subtle signs of uncontrolled PPID. 

Some members can slowly reduce the pergolide dose after the seasonal rise, in late December or early January, assuming you see no signs of poorly controlled PPID. Other members have not such luck.  

--
Cass, Sonoma Co., CA 2012
ECIR Group Moderator
Cayuse and Diamond Case History Folder                
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