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PPID / Cushing's Disease

Our advice about PPID/Cushing's Disease

Did You Know?

Did you know that as many as 9/10 horses with laminitis have an underlying hormonal disease? Until the end of October the lab fees to test for Cushing's (PPID) are free. If you would like to discuss your horse or pony, please contact the clinic.

Pituitary Pars Intermedia dysfunction (PPID) or ‘Equine Cushing’s Disease’

PPID is an extremely common disorder of middle aged to older horses. Most horses with PPID are over 12 years-old and studies have shown that 1 out of every 5 horses over 15 years of age are affected. PPID results from a benign growth in part of the brain known as the pituitary gland, which causes increased levels of several hormones to be released into the blood stream. The resulting hormonal imbalance cause the symptoms which we associate with PPID. PPID is often referred to as Equine Cushing’s Disease, however it is important to note that PPID in horses is very different from Cushing’s disease in humans and dogs as a different part of the pituitary gland is affected, resulting in different symptoms.

What are the symptoms of PPID?

  • Laminitis
  • Recurrent infections
  • Hypertrichosis/Hirsutism
  • Muscle loss
  • Abnormal fat distribution
  • Increased sweating
  • Polyuria/polydipsia
  • Lethargy/poor performance
  • Infertility
  • Seizures/blindness/collapse
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