|Thu 30th Oct 2014|
Equine Atypical Myopathy cases dramatically rise this autumn
Polo Times talks to Nicola Bell BVetMed MRCVS from Riverside Vets Equine about what signs to look for in your ponies
Atypical Myopathy is a highly fatal muscle disease, most commonly seen in young horses out to graze in autumn and spring, in both the UK and Northern Europe. It causes severe damage to muscles, affecting postural and respiratory muscles. Atypical Myopathy is attributed to the toxin Hypoglycin A, which is found in Sycamore seeds. The seeds can contain a variable amount of this toxin, so there is not necessarily a correlation between quantity ingested and severity of disease. Hypoglycin A interferes with muscle metabolism, and the breakdown of muscle tissues causes waste products to be released in high levels into the blood stream, which in turn results in kidney failure. Unfortunately there is no antidote available, so treatment consists of intravenous fluid therapy, pain relief and attentive nursing care – this is often best achieved via admittance to an equine hospital. The prognosis is very poor, and survival rates are reported as low as 26%.1
Nicola Bell reports to Polo Times that, “there have been an abnormally high number of cases reported this autumn.” Ms. Bell advises that the clinical signs to look out for include: weakness, muscle tremors, pain, lethargy, reluctance to walk, recumbancy (lying down with difficultly standing), discoloured urine (brown-red), difficulty breathing or swallowing. These are often confused with signs of colic.
Prevention of the disease requires restricting horses from gaining access to Sycamore seeds; avoid pasture with Sycamore trees, fencing off areas where seeds/leaves have fallen. Reduce stocking densities down to ensure that there is enough grazing, or alternatively supplementing the pasture with extra forage.
If you suspect a horse is suffering from Atypical Myopathy, contact your vet as a matter of urgency. Try not to move the horse as excessive movement may cause further muscle damage. If the horse urinates, try to collect a urine sample as this will aid the vet in their diagnosis. Removal of all other horses grazing on the same pasture and careful monitoring for clinical signs should be undertaken.
Reference: 1. European outbreaks of Atypical Myopathy in grazing equines (2006–2009): Spatiotemporal distribution, history and clinical features, G. van GALEN et al, Equine Veterinary Journal Volume 44, Issue 5, pages 614–620, September 2012
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Photograph: The classic Sycamore 'Helicopter' can be fatal for grazing horses
Wed 29th Oct 2014
Update on The Campeonato Femenino de la AAP following tornados and extreme rain
The scheduled Finals in both the Open and lower handicapped sections have been put on hold
Miramar, the highest handicapped team in the Open section and the all-Argentine side, El Paso Polo Ranch recently qualified for the Open Final of Pilar's Campeonato Femenino de la AAP, one of the most important ladies polo tournaments in Argentina. In the lower-handicapped tournament, La Dolfina Aventura were due to meet the second El Paso Polo Ranch team. However, the dates for both Finals have had to be rescheduled due to the country experiencing tornados and 150mm of rain in the space of 12 hours.
Miramar (featuring British player Annabel McNaught-Davis(6), Jeanine Hugo (3), Stephanie Haverhals (4) and Dolores Bunge (5)) and El Paso Polo Ranch (Lia Salvo (8), Andrea Ferreira (), Sol Lopez Llames (4) and Ciara Cassino (5)) attained their place in the Final after league stages knocked out the Santa Maria Polo Club team (Maitena Marre (0), Camila Rossi (5), Ines Lalor (6) and Catalina Bunge (6)).
Adolfo Cambiaso's daughter, Mia and her La Dolfina Aventura teammates (Milagros F Araujo (2), Candelaria Araujo (2) and Fernanda Rivas (3)) beat La Enriqueta El Barón, 8-3 to make the low goal Final whilst the El Paso Polo Ranch team (Lia Salvo (8), also playing in the Open team, Andrea Ferreira (0), María Martha Fossa (0) and Inés Arteta (0)) overcame La Providencia Reido Caviar 10-3 to secure their place. The games will be re scheduled when the extreme weather subsides.
Photograph: Annabel McNaught-Davis and her team Miramar in front the grounds at the AAP grounds in Pilar By Annabel McNaught-Davis
Mon 27th Oct 2014
La Dolfina and Ellerstina to meet yet again
It’s déjà vu for those watching The Hurlingham Open after both teams secure wins to take them to the Final
Following victories over the weekend, La Dolfina Hope Funds and Piaget Ellerstina will meet once again on Sunday 2 November when they take to the field for the Final of The Hurlingham Open. Following on from La Dolfina’s win of The Tortugas Open over Ellerstina earlier in the month, and both teams playing true to form, the majority of polo fans would have rightly predicted another Final between the two great teams of the Argentine season. However, both line-ups were severely put to the test over the weekend, with neither side achieving an easy victory.
Defending champions La Dolfina had to defeat last year’s Open Finalists Alegria in order to cement their place in the second Triple Crown Final. Alegria’s Polito Pieres, Hilario Ulloa, Lucas Monteverde and Alfredo Capella (replacing an injured Freddie Mannix), arrived at the field determined not to let the perfection of a 40 goal line-up faze them, and they succeeded. Pieres led his side with confidence, causing La Dolfina to have to dig deep in order to achieve a win. At the end of the sixth chukka the scores were tied with Alegria proving to be a real threat to the opposition. Unfortunately for the lower-handicapped 34 goal team, victory was not to be this time around, as La Dolfina producing a late attack to give them a 13-12 win.
While La Dolfina were resting after their tough match against Alegria, the last place in the Final was still all to fight for. Piaget Ellerstina and La Aguada were both arriving at the match unbeaten, therefore the strongest in their league and so a win for either side would take them through to next weekend’s Final. It was La Aguada who were first to make their mark, with Sapo Caset leading the way for his teammates, Miguel and Nachi Novillo Astrada and Facundo Sola. Their early control earned La Aguada a 7-5 advantage at half-time, leaving Ellerstina with quite a lot of work to do. The three Pieres brothers and Mariano Aguerre returned aware of the challenge ahead and seemed to get to work quickly – an undeniable concern for La Aguada. Gonzalito rediscovered the Ellerstina flair, creating chances for both himself and his teammates, and suddenly the tables had turned. Ellerstina were producing the top-form polo that has become expected of the team and which, and consequently left La Aguada struggling to keep control. With La Aguada’s early efforts forgotten, Ellerstina stormed into the lead, 14 goals to 12.
La Dolfina and Ellerstina will now come up against each other for the second time in a Triple Crown Final this season. With La Dolfina achieving a confident 14-8 win over Ellerstina in The Tortugas Open, it will be interesting to see who comes out on top for this weekend’s Final. The Hurlingham Open is the second installment within the Triple Crown series, the third and final being the prestigious Open, where all eight teams will once again be seen in action. The Open is scheduled to start on November 15 with the Final taking place on December 6.
Photograph: La Dolfina and Alegria in action in last year's Open Final.
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