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Effectiveness of homeopathic remedies in severe laminitic horses
27 January 2018 (online)
Background : Equine laminitis is a severe inflammation of the internal lamellar of the horse foot due to an alteration of the periferic vascular flood flow. Marked vascular disturbances occur and microtrombi form in the digital vasculature, which is primed for neutrophil invasion and activation. Endotoxin exarcebate endothelial cell dysfunction, increasing endothelin-I and reducing Endothelial Nitrix Oxide Synthase (eNOS) activity. Ischaemic and inflammatory stimuli could also activate MMPs, leading to digital failure: destruction of the basement membrane bonding the interlocking lamellar leaflets, leads to detachment of phalanx bone from the hoof wall. Ischemia (I) triggers an inflammatory response that precipitates cell death during reperfusion (R).
Nitric Oxide (NO) is an inflammatory mediator produced by macrophages and neutrophils during the inflammatory response. It is synthesised via oxidation of L-Arginine by Nitric Oxide Synthetase and plays an ambiguous role during I/R. Additionally, NO mediates the activation of Soluble Guanylyl Cyclase, which can also be activated by endogenous Carbon Monoxide (CO). Metabolism of heme and lipid peroxidation, which generate CO, are both enhanced during inflammation.
Methods : 5 horses (4 mares and 1 stallion) diagnosed with acute severe laminitis were treated with homeopathic remedies; 10 healthy horses were selected to determine whether homeopathic remedies are useful and safe as a treatment for equine laminitis, if the level of NO can be re-established and the role of CO. Laminitic horses were administered oral homeopathic treatment only: Aconitum 30ch, Apis 15ch, Arnica 7ch, Belladonna 9ch, Bryonia 9ch and Nux vomica 9ch – 2 granules of each remedy every hour, 10 times per day for 10 days. Variables evaluated included signs of pain, grade of lameness, digital pulse, NO, Nitric Oxide Synthetase Expression, CO and Hemeoxygenase Expression in plasma levels.
Results : Homeopathy-treated horses showed an obvious improvement after one day of treatment. Clinical signs of the disease (pain, severe lameness) had completely disappeared at the third day without side effects. NO diminished in laminitis has significant recovery levels in mares. CO and HO-1 levels were higher than in healthy horses.