Blood test results - advice

Twinkletoes

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As many of you have followed, my yearling has been extremely poor, and although picked up since we got him in Nov, he should be better than he is.
So, blood test results came back today. The vets called, and are putting a copy in the post, so am going to get a second opinion.

He said the liver enzymes are up, but not dangerously, and he is prescribing a liquid to boost his red blood cell production.
Thought suggested parasitic activity but couldnt understand that as both boys have been on a strict worming programme since Nov, and had 2 double doses within that. They were only wormed last tues too.

Stupidly, it was 530 on a Friday when they called, but I didnt get a lot more info than that.
He certainly wasnt overly concerned, and said he would be surprised if the summer didnt right the horse.

Can anyone help at all, esp re liver enzymes 'slightly up' or shall I just wait and see what our other horsey vet suggests when it comes through in the post?x
 

AmyMay

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Parasite burden could be implicating tape worm. Liver enzymes up could, I guess, be an indication of some sort of toxic problem, ie. ragwort poisening perhaps???

Sounds like a good chat with the vet is needed to help you understand fully what's going on.
 

Twinkletoes

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Thanks AM. Getting paperwork through for Tues and then taking it to our other vet for detailed help. The pasture is totally clear of ragwort, unless this is something he had before Nov. Re worming, he has been on a good programme since Nov, and has only ever interacted with one other horse, who is on exactly the same prog. Guess that doesnt mean it is ruled out at all. I think tbh all the signs do point to worm infes., something Ive never had to deal with before and hope even if he's had it a while it wont cause lasting damage.
Have you had some promising calls re Thumper? x
 

AmyMay

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Yes, the ragwort could have been before you got him. Good luck with the vet. Keep us updated.

Yep, fair bit of interest in the grey one, which is nice.
 

Box_Of_Frogs

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As AM says, raised liver enzymes clearly indicate some sort of damage and sadly, one of the commonest reasons is ragwort poisoning. Ragwort poisoning is cumulative so the original damage could have occurred before, and often indicates a horse acquired from less than perfect owners. The liver has to be over 70% damaged before you normally start to see obvious symptoms, unless it is "accidentally" picked up during blood tests for other things. Livers damaged by ragwort cannot regenerate but if your lad's problem is a liver infection, then he can recover. To support his liver while you and the vets work out what is going on, your ned should be on a low protein diet - a challenge if you are feeding to improve. If it is ragwort poisoning, the horse should never have oil in his feed or any conditioning product at all as they always have high levels of oil. Damaged livers struggle to break down oils and fats. Yea sac will also support a struggling liver as it provides essential B vits, aids hind gut digestion and is a mild appetite stimulant. Milk thistle is also anecdotally beneficial for liver damage.

The only definitive test for ragwort poisoning is a liver biopsy which is a highly invasive procedure. Saying all that, if your ned has mild ragwort poisoning, he probably has enough functioning liver remaining to be able to live an almost normal life. I have a rescued mare with advanced ragwort poisoning and she is now fully vet insured and lives a normal life except that she has the diet as above and has to be stabled during the day from about May to September. She is pink-nosed so burns easily anyway, but the liver damage prevents her from breaking down chlorophyl from the grass she eats. So her whole body acts like a giant leaf and actually attracts sunshine.

Hoping that this info might help while you sort your boy out but hopefully it is just an infection and he will be fine soon x
 

Twinkletoes

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How interesting - thank you for all that info. You are right re being a challenge to feed a low protein diet as that was one of the things the feed co's have told me to boost. Look forward to hearing from my other vet Tues, and doing my best to sort this out. He is going to be a lovely horse, I am convinced of it, and we will do whatever it takes to right whatever wrongs hv been done to this poor chap.
 

kellyeaton

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i lost my mare to ragwort poisioning so if you need any help i will try and answer as may questions as i can for youi!
 
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