Words followed by this symbol are defined here
body condition score (BCS)---a designation, based on a nine-point numeric scale, indicating the amount of fat on a horse’s body. A BCS is assigned after a visual and hands-on appraisal.
choke--- in horses, obstruction of the esophagus; in people, obstruction of the windpipe (trachea).
DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid)---large organic molecule that consists of two chains of nucleotides wound around each other; the material of which genes are made. Genes are responsible for the individual inherited characteristics of living organisms.
duodenum--- proximal portion of the small intestine, extending from the stomach to the jejunum.
endoscope--- small, flexible tube equipped with light and a viewing device; used to examine or operate on body passages or internal organs.
epithelium--- tissue layer covering and/or lining internal and external body surfaces.
equine metabolic syndrome (EMS)---endocrine disorder characterized by increased fat deposits in specific locations of the body or overall obesity; insulin resistance, which leads to abnormally high levels of the hormone circulating in the bloodstream; and a predisposition toward laminitis in the absence of other recognized causes. hereditary equine regional dermal asthenia
(HERDA)---inherited disorder characterized by weakened connective tissue throughout the body but most noticeably in the skin. HERDA is found only in Quarter Horses and related stock breeds, especially in several lines of prominent cutting horses.
insulin resistance--- metabolic disorder, similar to type-2 diabetes, that occurs when certain cells in the body become less sensitive to the action of insulin, and normal amounts of the hormone can no longer keep adequate amounts of glucose moving into the cells for use as fuel.
laminitis--- inflammation of the sensitive plates of soft tissue (laminae) within the horse’s foot caused by physical or physiologic injury. Severe cases of laminitis may result in founder, an internal deformity of the foot. Acute laminitis sets in rapidly and usually responds to appropriate, intensive treatment, while chronic laminitis is a persistent, long-term condition that may be unresponsive to treatment.
leptospirosis--- systemic disease caused by Leptospira organisms and characterized by red-cell destruction, kidney disease, inflammation of the eyeball and, in pregnant mares, abortion. Occurs sporadically in horses; common in dogs and cattle.
pituitary pars intermedia dysfunction (PPID, Cushing’s disease)---disease caused when the cortex of the adrenal gland produces excessive amounts of hormones, including cortisol; signs include persistent long hair, thin skin, fragile bones, stupor, weakness and sweating.
polymerase chain reaction (PCR)---a technique which is used to amplify the number of copies of a specific region of DNA, in order to produce enough DNA to be adequately tested.
This technique can be used to identify, with a very high-probability, disease-causing viruses and/or bacteria.
polyp--- benign, narrow-based fibrous tumor growing from the membrane lining a body cavity.
proud flesh--- excess granulation tissue rising out of and above the edges of a wound, forming a raw, exposed mound that makes further healing delayed or impossible without medication or surgery.
rainrot (rain scald)---crusted, painful, infectious skin inflammation, caused by Dermatophilus congolensis, which lifts the hair and removes it at its root, resulting in slipping away of affected areas of the hair coat. Triggered by moisture.
sarcoid--- viral tumor composed mainly of connective tissue which appears on the skin; the most common tumor of the horse.
scratches--- scabby and/or oozing skin inflammation on the back of the pastern above the heels; equivalent to chapped hands in people.
septicemia--- bacterial infection circulating throughout the bloodstream.
strangles (distemper)---highly contagious infection of the lymph nodes, usually of the head, caused by Streptococcus equi bacteria. The abscesses may become so large as to obstruct the airway (hence the term “strangles”) and may break internally, draining a thick, yellow pus through the nose, or externally, draining through a spontaneous or surgical opening in the skin.
uveitis--- inflammation of the pigmented structures within the eyeball.