The Equine Hospital (University of Bristol) are continuing their ground-breaking research into headshaking in conjunction with the University of Oxford and BOVA UK. We have already pioneered EquiPENS™, a neuromodulatory treatment for headshaking. This life-saving procedure has enabled many horses to go back to work, pain-free. However, as with people with similar conditions, there is no ‘one size fits all’ treatment and some horses do not get better with EquiPENS™.
In trigeminal-mediated headshaking, the trigeminal nerve, which is the main sensory nerve to the face, becomes overly sensitive. We are trialling a new supplement which has been shown to stabilise nerve function in people and small animals. This is a natural substance added to the food – so it is practical and easy to give, safe, and not prohibited in competition.
Your horse may be eligible to be included if he/she has been diagnosed with trigeminal-mediated headshaking by an RCVS specialist. Diagnosis would include tests such as CT scan of the head. If you would like to find out more about the trial, please contact your vet who can then discuss with us.
We are grateful to BOVA UK for funding this research.