The Veterinary clinics of North America. Equine practice2004; 19(3); 575-597; doi: 10.1016/j.cveq.2003.08.012

Treatment and prevention of equine gastric ulcer syndrome.

Abstract: EGUS is a common problem in horses and foals. Acids are the important causative factors and current therapy targets the suppression of gastric HCl and creation of a permissive environment for ulcer healing. Diagnosis is based on history, clinical signs, gastroscopy, and response to treatment. Of the products available, only GastroGard (FDA approved) and ranitidine have been shown to be efficacious in the treatment of EGUS. Ranitidine is often associated with treatment failure as a result of incorrect dosing and lack of owner compliance, because of the three times daily dosing required. Also, EGUS occurs in critically ill neonatal foals, but the pathogenesis may be different than in adult horses and acid-suppressive therapy may not be as effective.
Publication Date: 2004-01-27 PubMed ID: 14740758DOI: 10.1016/j.cveq.2003.08.012Google Scholar: Lookup
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This research explores the prevention and treatment methods for equine gastric ulcer syndrome (EGUS), a common disorder in horses. It investigates the efficacy of various therapies, highlighting that GastroGard and ranitidine have proven effective, although ranitidine’s treatment failure is often linked to inaccurate dosing and owners not fully adhering to the three-times-daily dosing schedule.

Understanding Equine Gastric Ulcer Syndrome (EGUS)

  • EGUS is a prevalent ailment in horses and foals. The disorder is primarily caused by the effects of acids.
  • Currently, the primary therapeutic approach to EGUS involves suppressing gastric HCl and fostering an environment conducive for the healing of ulcers.
  • Diagnosis for EGUS is based on historical patterns, clinical symptoms, gastroscopy, and response to treatment methods.

Assessing Treatment Methods

  • The study identifies GastroGard (an FDA approved medication) and ranitidine as medicines that have effectively treated EGUS.
  • However, it points out ranitidine’s limitations. Its effectiveness is curbed due to common instances of incorrect dosage administration and insufficient owner compliance because of the demanding requirement of thrice-daily dosing.

EGUS Scenario in Critically Ill Neonatal Foals

  • The research also notes that EGUS commonly manifests in critically ill neonatal foals.
  • However, the formation and progression of the disorder might differ from those in mature horses, implying the potential for a varied therapeutic response.
  • As such, the study suggests that the routine acid-suppressive treatment may not be as effective in treating EGUS in these young, critically ill foals.

Cite This Article

Buchanan BR, Andrews FM. (2004). Treatment and prevention of equine gastric ulcer syndrome. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract, 19(3), 575-597.


ISSN: 0749-0739
NlmUniqueID: 8511904
Country: United States
Language: English
Volume: 19
Issue: 3
Pages: 575-597

Researcher Affiliations

Buchanan, Benjamin R
  • Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, The University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine, Knoxville 37996, USA.
Andrews, Frank M

    MeSH Terms

    • Animal Feed
    • Animals
    • Animals, Newborn
    • Anti-Bacterial Agents / therapeutic use
    • Anti-Ulcer Agents / therapeutic use
    • Gastric Acid / metabolism
    • Gastric Acidity Determination
    • Helicobacter Infections / complications
    • Helicobacter Infections / drug therapy
    • Helicobacter Infections / prevention & control
    • Helicobacter Infections / veterinary
    • Helicobacter pylori
    • Horse Diseases / drug therapy
    • Horse Diseases / etiology
    • Horse Diseases / prevention & control
    • Horses
    • Hydrogen-Ion Concentration
    • Physical Conditioning, Animal
    • Risk Factors
    • Stomach Ulcer / drug therapy
    • Stomach Ulcer / etiology
    • Stomach Ulcer / prevention & control
    • Stomach Ulcer / veterinary
    • Treatment Outcome


    This article has been cited 7 times.
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