The Equine Heart: Function, Malfunction and Sudden Death
On November 6, 2011, Hickstead collapsed shortly after he and Eric Lamaze completed their first round at the Rolex Grand Prix of Verona CSI in Italy. Despite instant medical attention from several veterinarians, the 15-year-old Dutch warmblood stallion would never again rise to his feet. After a necropsy was performed, it was determined that Hickstead had succumbed to an aortic aneurysm. The physical capabilities of the equine heart are extraordinary. A horse’s ability to amplify his heart rate during exercise to nearly 10 times greater than his resting rate is a key reason for his athletic prowess. But functional or structural abnormalities can occur. “Next to respiratory and musculoskeletal disorders, cardiac disease represents the third most important cause of loss of performance in horses,” says Dr. Robert Gilmour, DVM, of Cornell University in Ithaca, NY. A powerful pumping machine A horse’s heart is roughly the size of a large melon and…
Subscribers: enter the email and password connected to your subscription.
First time logging in?
Subscribe now and enjoy full access to Horse-Canada.com
Your All-Access Digital Subscription includes unlimited access to all Horse-Canada.com articles as well as a digital subscription to each issue of Horse Sport, Horse Canada, and Canadian Thoroughbred.
Get full access to Horse-Canada.com including all articles from Horse Sport, Horse Canada, Canadian Thoroughbred, and The Canadian Horse Annual.
Read the digital editions of Horse Sport, Horse Canada, Canadian Thoroughbred, and The Canadian Horse Annual.
copyright © horse-canada.com 2014