Gastric, or stomach, ulcers are sores that form on the stomach lining. They can affect any horse at any age with the prevalence estimated between 50 and 90%.
What are gastric ulcers?
Gastric, or stomach, ulcers are sores that form on the stomach lining. They are common in horses, with the prevalence estimated between 50 and 90%. They can affect any horse at any age but occur most frequently in horses that perform athletic activities such as racing, endurance, and showing.
Sign to look out forStomach ulcers are often under diagnosed in horses, but they can lead to many signs such as:
- Recurrent episodes of colic
- Weight loss & poor appetite
- Poor coat condition
- Changes in behaviour
- Poor performance
Diagnosis of stomach ulcers
To accurately diagnose gastric ulcers in horses we use a Gastroscope – a three metre rigid endoscope. This is a camera which views the horses stomach on a computer screen and therefore allows us to diagnose, grade the severity and treat gastric ulceration.
- Horses arrive at 3-4pm the day before the gastroscopy procedure.
- We starve them overnight and they are scoped at 9am the following morning.
- Horses are sedated and placed in stocks.
- DVD is made of the scope findings.
- Experienced vets then advise on the treatment of horses.
- All horses go home with a diet plan and client information sheet.