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Trigeminal-mediated headshaking in horses: prevalence, impact, and management strategies

Authors Roberts V

Received 13 August 2018

Accepted for publication 16 November 2018

Published 9 January 2019 Volume 2019:10 Pages 1—8


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Professor Young Lyoo

Veronica Roberts
Bristol Vet School, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Bristol, Langford, North Somerset BS40 5HB, UK
Abstract: Trigeminal-mediated headshaking is a little-understood neuropathic facial pain condition of the horse. The condition may affect around 1% of the equine population to a degree of severity sufficient to require veterinary attention. As a pain condition, this represents a significant welfare issue. Horses are usually more severely affected at exercise which can leave them unable to perform, or even dangerous to ride and handle. With little known about the condition and variable response to treatments, severely affected horses are often euthanized. This review article considers the literature on trigeminal-mediated headshaking, focusing on what is known, and indeed not known, about the prevalence of the condition and its impact. The current published management options are considered, along with their challenges and limitations.
Keywords: neurology, neurological disorder, neuropathic pain, facial pain, welfare

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