Stop the Merry-Go-Round – I Want to Get Off!

CC JesusCM 'Carrousel' www.flickr.com/photos/jesuscm/

CC JesusCM 'Carrousel' www.flickr.com/photos/jesuscm/

It’s been that kind of a week.  Last weekend we noticed that Fudge was not turning on his haunches as well as he had been.  When standing to be brushed, his right rear leg was cocked out almost 90°.  Monday night he wasn’t really interested in dinner, so we took him out for a quick neurological test.  We considered that the symptoms might be heat related, but up until yesterday it had not been truly hot here.  Tuesday offered the same deficits.

The vet came out Wednesday to take blood samples, do a partial neuro exam, and to talk about a relapse.  We sent the samples to UC Davis for an IFA test for S. neurona, and a Selenium test to see if he is deficient (different than a mineral profile).  In the exam he had problems turning on the right rear, failed to move his right rear leg back into correct position when placed far out or crossed (proprioception), and was easy to pull of-center by the tail.  She agreed that he looked worse, and we decided to order medicine without waiting for the blood test results. 

Thursday morning we tried to order diclazuril.  It turned out to be an all-day affair.  The bottom line was that the compounding pharmacy only had enough diclazuril to make a 21-day supply, not the 60 days that we need.  They did not know when they would get more diclazuril, if ever.  I told them to send it, and I hoped that I would find another source in the next two weeks.

I emailed an EPM horse owner in Oklahoma, whom I knew had recently treated with diclazuril.  She put me in touch with her vet, who gave me the compounding pharmacy information.  Problem solved.  I’ll add the compounding pharmacy information to the EPMhorse.org Treatment page. 

For those wondering why I don’t just pick up a tube of Marquis, it’s about the strength and cost of the drugs.  Dr. MacKay at U of FL recommends using ponazuril (Marquis) or diclazuril at 7X the FDA dose for treatment of relapses.  That would equal one tube of Marquis PER DAY, for four days, then a regular dose for 28 days.  Add to that a sulfa combination, and you could be talking about $2000 of drugs in the first month, likely to be repeated for a second month.  The compounded diclazuril or diclazuril/sulfa/pyrimeth can be as little as $145 per month, for a 7X dose of diclazuril for the entire month.  Dad was right.  There is no money tree growing in the backyard.

EPM - it robs the horse of his grace and dignity…and robs the owners as well.

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One Response to “Stop the Merry-Go-Round – I Want to Get Off!”

  1. Eric Says:

    Let me know if you need another source of diclazuril.
    Professional arts pharmacy carries it. 888-237-4737
    Eric