Old School Tying Up Treatment

Q. Your article on tying-up ("Exertional Rhabdomyolysis: Not Just Tying-Up Anymore"­) was very detailed but left out the old remedy I have used successfully every time: vitamin E/selenium injections prior to whatever led to tying-up episodes in the past. I never had this fail and wonder why it has been abandoned?

via e-mail

A. Results from studies done on Standardbreds that developed tying-up found that these horses had higher levels of vitamin E and selenium than horses that did not tie up. This led to the conclusion that tying-up was not consistently caused by a deficiency in these vitamins and minerals. In addition, newer formulations of vitamin E and selenium are more bioavailable (a greater amount is absorbed by and made available in the horse's body), so it's now possible to achieve adequate systemic levels by dietary supplementation (rather than injections).

About the Author

Stephanie Valberg, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, ACVSMR

Stephanie Valberg, DVM, PhD, Dipl. ACVIM, ACVSMR, is the Mary Anne McPhail Dressage Chair in Equine Sports Medicine and a Professor of Large Animal Clinical Sciences at Michigan State University. She is a leading researcher on the subject of tying-up and the genetic basis for equine neuromuscular disorders.

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