Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Cervical diskospondylitis in a Tennessee walking horse mare
  1. Jeff Olivarez1,
  2. Meggan T Graves1 and
  3. Federica Morandi2
  1. 1Large Animal Clinical Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
  2. 2Small Animal Clinical Sciences, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee, USA
  1. Correspondence to Dr Meggan T Graves; mtoohey{at}


A 17-year-old Tennessee Walking Horse mare presented for an approximate four-week history of hindlimb weakness and suspect laminitis, as perceived by the owner. When examined by a veterinarian, no lameness was found; rather significant cervical pain was detected. Cervical radiographs revealed abnormalities consistent with diskospondylitis at C5-C6. The patient was placed on oral trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole (20 mg/kg orally twice a day) to be continued for two to three months, as well as firocoxib (0.3 mg/kg orally once a day). After two days of treatment, gabapentin (10 mg/kg orally twice a day) was added for pain management. Two days following, fentanyl patches (100 mcg/hour every 36 hours) were placed to further alleviate pain. Acupuncture was also used for pain management. The patient was released two weeks after initial presentation, with marked improvement. At the time of this report, two months after admission, the mare continues to show marked improvement in mobility and range of motion.

  • acupuncture
  • analgesia
  • antimicrobials
  • radiography
  • diskospondylitis
View Full Text

Statistics from


  • Contributors In addition to the authors contributing to all parts of the manuscript, JO and MTG assessed and treated the patient, and FM participated in the diagnostics and radiographic interpretation.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data availability statement No additional data are available.

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.