The RVC’s Equine Referral Hospital welcomes referrals for evaluation of horses and ponies with suspected neurological and neuromuscular disease.

On admission, your horse will undergo a series of comprehensive and detailed neurological tests in order to determine if a neurological problem is likely to be present, and if so, where it is located - in the brain, spinal cord, nerves or muscle. Our skilled clinicians have access to a very comprehensive range of equipment for further evaluation of your horse.Our state-of-the-art facilities and experience includes:

  • High powered digital radiography for complete evaluation of horse’s necks and backs, including oblique projections
  • Computed tomography (CT) (performed in the sedated or anaesthetised horse) for evaluation of the skull, cranial nerves and brain
  • Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) performed in anaesthetised horses for very detailed examination of the brain and cranial nerves
  • Cerebrospinal fluid collection and analysis
  • Cervical intra-articular process joint medication under ultrasound guidance
  • Myelography – for investigation of spinal cord compression in the neck
  • Electromyography – for investigation of neuromuscular problems
  • Brainstem auditory evoked response testing – for evaluation of horses with vestibular and brain stem problems
  • Ventral stabilisation surgery for horses with wobbler syndrome
  • Dynamic neck fluoroscopy for evaluating vertebral position during exercise
  • Electroencephalography – for evaluation of horses with seizures or epilepsy
  • Muscle biopsy – for histological evaluation of primary and secondary muscle disorders, including tying up

Clinicians work closely with the Comparative Neuromuscular Diseases Laboratory, which offers sophisticated histopathological assessment of muscle biopsy samples, genetic testing and other tests to evaluate equine muscle disorders such as rhabdomyolysis, atypical myopathy, equine motor neurone disease and polysaccharide storage myopathy types 1 and 2.

Our aim is to provide owners with as much information as possible, including the prognosis for the condition, so that you can make informed decisions about your horse and his or her treatment and management. We will also spend time discussing the crucial aspects regarding safety and insurance issues.

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