Susan Piscopo, DVM, PhD

Susan Piscopo, DVM, PhD, is a free-lance writer in the biomedical sciences. She practiced veterinary medicine in North Carolina before accepting a fellowship to pursue a PhD in physiology at North Carolina State University. She lives in northern New Jersey with her husband and two sons.

Articles by Susan Piscopo

Amikacin Therapy in Newborns

Aminoglycosides, including amikacin, are known for their potent activity against bacteria that cause sepsis in newborn foals. Dosage protocols for aminoglycosides have been extensively studied in humans, and conventional dosing at eight- to Read More

Tick-Borne Illness

Diseases transmitted by ticks are becoming more widespread. Recently, a case report was published detailing a common tick-borne illness in horses called equine granulocytic anaplasmosis (EGA), once called equine ehrlichiosis. An 11-year old Read More

The ART of Breeding

Successful breeding of horses is not always as easy as presenting a receptive mare to a fertile stallion. There are many things that can go awry with the reproductive process. Broodmares that were once fertile and produced many excellent foals Read More

EHV in Foals From Vaccinated Mares

The results suggest that certain mares have latent EHV-1, experience reactivation of the virus, and pass it on to their foals, allowing viral spread around the farm. Therefore, EHV-1 is continuing a silent cycle among foals even when the mares are Read More

Fractures in Thoroughbred Racehorses

Musculoskeletal injury is the most common cause of lost training days for Thoroughbred racehorses. This type of injury, particularly fractures, is also cited as a major reason horses leave the industry. But the incidence and characteristics of Read More

GastroGard vs. a Generic Drug

It has been reported that more than 80% of highly trained horses will develop gastric ulcers. But only one anti-ulcer drug, GastroGard, has been found to significantly decrease the risk of developing moderate to severe gastric ulcers during Read More

MRI for Confirming DDF Tendonitis

Tendonitis of the deep digital flexor tendon (DDFT) in horses is a newly recognized cause of foot pain. Radiography and even ultrasonography have failed to detect abnormalities in this tendon, especially as it travels within the hoof capsule and Read More

Injecting Cervical Facet Joints

The ability to accurately locate and inject the cervical vertebral facet joints, the joints that lie between the transverse processes of the vertebrae, has significant advantages, including the performance of regional nerve blocks and Read More

Medicinal Control of Tying-Up

Dantrolene sodium (Dantrium) is used to control exertional rhabdomyolysis (ER, also called tying-up) in horses. Diagnosis of ER is typically confirmed by a finding of increased serum creatine kinase (CK), which is often greater than 1,000 IU at Read More

Warm Springwater Immersion

Immersion of the body in natural springwater has been studied extensively in humans and dogs for its healing effects. The theory behind immersion is its ability to temporarily suppress the sympathetic nervous system (SNS, the part of the nervous Read More

Tendon Healing, Aged Broodmares Featured at Convention

Smarty Jones won a little sympathy Saturday night, July 24, as Patricia Hogan, VMD, Dipl. ACVS, board-certified veterinary surgeon, recounted the tale of how the Pennsylvania-bred colt reared up in the starting gate of Philadelphia Park last yea Read More

Anesthesia and the Equine Brain

In horses, the gas anesthetic isoflurane can produce decreases in mean arterial pressure (MAP) as well as cerebral perfusion pressure (that pushes blood into the brain). The implication is that decreased cerebral perfusion pressure leads to Read More

Arthroscopy for Meniscal Tears

A meniscus is an interarticular (between joints) synovial cartilage or membrane. Meniscal tears in the stifle joint are well described in human athletes and dogs. Despite a few published reports in horses, however, the condition remains difficul Read More

Efficacy of Common Anti-Ulcer Medications in Racehorses

Gastric ulcers are so common in racing horses that many equine practitioners maintain their racing patients on anti-ulcer medications to prevent and treat gastric ulcers. Reports in the literature place the percentage of racing horses in trainin Read More

Injuries Associated With Steeplechase Racing

Studies have been conducted to determine the types of injuries that occur in horses on flat racetracks in the United States and steeplechase and hunt races in the United Kingdom. Unfortunately, there is a paucity of data on injuries occurring Read More

Tendon Healing, Aged Broodmare Fertility Featured at AVMA Convention

Smarty Jones won a little sympathy Saturday night, July 24, as Patricia Hogan, VMD, Dipl. ACVS, board-certified veterinary surgeon, recounted the tale of how the Pennsylvania-bred colt reared up in the starting gate of Read More

Treating Navicular Disease From Inside the Bone

Healthy bone undergoes constant metabolic change to prevent bone loss or abnormal remodeling (cell turnover) that can occur with loading. Horses with navicular disease can have abnormal remodeling and formation of osteolytic lesions (areas of Read More

Endurance and Endotoxemia

Endotoxemia in horses is usually associated with severe infections, inflammation, and colic. Endotoxin from intestinal bacteria activates release of inflammatory mediators such as thromboxane B2 (TxB2), tumor necrosis factor-alpha (TNF-alpha), Read More

Trilostane for Cushing's Disease

Equine Cushing's syndrome (ECS), or hyperadrenocorticism, is caused by an excess of cortisol. This syndrome produces signs including excessive hair growth (hirsutism), lethargy, fat redistribution under the skin, chronic/relapsing laminitis, and Read More

Measuring Hemoglobin and Red Blood Cells in the Field

Many equine illnesses and injuries require rapid determination of blood's oxygen-carrying capacity. Hemoglobin (Hg) can be measured, and packed cell volume (PCV) can be estimated, providing a good indication of how much oxygen can circulate. Read More

Rutgers Auction Raises $15K for Research

Over two dozen bidders came out April 25 for a chance to own one of 12 Belgian-cross fillies and five Belgian and Belgian-cross mares available this year at the 5th Annual North American Ranching Information Council (NAERIC) auction of incentive Read More

Drug-Resistant Parasites

When a weanling on a North Carolina breeding farm was diagnosed with larval cyathostominosis, Dianne Little, BVSc, MRCVS, equine surgery resident and PhD candidate in the Department of Clinical Sciences in North Carolina State University's (NCSU Read More

Identifying Sacroiliac Joint Pain

A diagnosis of sacroiliac joint (SI) pain tends to be one of exclusion, after other causes of hind limb lameness have been ruled out. To simplify the diagnostic process, researchers in the United Kingdom conducted a study involving 74 horses Read More

Ivermectin Resistance in Foals

On many breeding farms, Parascaris equorum (roundworms) and other intestinal parasites in young foals are now controlled with one class of dewormer. This has become common because of the belief that certain drugs, like ivermectin, are Read More

Miniature Horses' Eyes

It is tempting for veterinarians to use laboratory reference ranges collected from full-sized horses when treating miniature horses. This is not always appropriate, however, as miniature horses have some breed characteristics that are only now Read More