Cyathostomiasis

Veterinary advice should be sought before applying any treatment or vaccine.

Cyathostomiasis

Equine Cyathostomiasis, Larval Cyathostomiasis

Cyathostomiasis is a common condition in horses worldwide that is caused by infestation of small strongyle parasites (cyathostomins) within the horse's gastrointestinal system. There are more than 50 different species of cyathostomins recognized. Cyathostomins can survive in the pasture and inside of the horse for long periods of time. Important risk factors for infection with cyathostomins are age, season and duration of time pasted since the horse last received deworming medication.

The diagnosis of cyathostomiasis is difficult because the fecal egg counts are often very low and clinical and laboratory signs can be variable. For an actual diagnosis, the presence of larvae need to be confirmed in the gastrointestinal tract.

Control practices of cyathostomins need to be tailored to individual horse farms. The objectives of effective control programs should address measures to reduce the numbers of infective larvae on pastures and to reduce the number of anthelmintic treatments required to achieve this egg reduction as a means of delaying or avoiding drug resistance in the cyathostomin population.

Recent research has shown the potential of several plant extracts derived from traditional ethnoveterinary treatments as possible alternative control strategies for cyathostomins. Acacia nilotica (L.) Delile (Acacia), Rumex abyssinicus Jacq., Cucumis prophetarum L (Cucumis ), Artemisia absinthium L. (Wormwood), Chenopodium album L. (Lambsquarters) and Zingiber officinale Roscoe (Ginger) are among some of the plants that shown significant anthelmintic activity.

Symptoms

Chronic intermittent diarrhea
Sudden, profuse diarrhea
Ventral abdominal oedema
Fever
Sudden or chronic weight loss
Poor body condition
Lethargy
Intermittent colic
Loss of appetite
Variable fecal consistency

Diagnosis

  • History
  • Clinical signs
  • Physical exam
  • Ultrasonography
  • Fecal examination
  • Rectal biopsy

Treatment


TreatmentDetails
Moxidectin given as a single dose at a rate of 0.4 mg/kg body weight
Fenbendazole (10mg/kg body weight x 1 day for five days followed by a single dose of ivermectin (0.2 mg/kg body weight)
Corticosteroids w/ supportive therapy

Prevention

  • Regular deworming program
  • Regular fecal tests

Scientific Research References

Good Overviews

Seasonality

WinterSpringSummerAutumn