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Management and horse-level risk factors for recurrent colic in the UK general equine practice population

Scantlebury, CE, Archer, DC, Pinchbeck, GL and Proudman, Christopher (2015) Management and horse-level risk factors for recurrent colic in the UK general equine practice population Equine Veterinary Journal, 47 (2). pp. 202-206.

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Reasons for performing study: Recurrent colic occurs frequently in the general horse population but little evidence exists about what factors place horses at greater risk of recurrent colic. Objectives: To quantify time-varying and non time-varying risk factors for recurrent colic among horses attended by first-opinion veterinary surgeons in northwest England. Study design: Nested case-control study. Methods: A nested case-control study was conducted on data from a prospective longitudinal cohort study of 127 horses recruited subsequent to an episode of medical colic. Data were collected on management and recurrent colic episodes at 4-monthly intervals by telephone questionnaires. All recurrent colic episodes were selected as cases; controls were unmatched and randomly selected from all horse-time at risk. Data relating to the 30 days prior to the date of colic or control selection were used to determine exposure status. Multivariable logistic regression analyses were used to determine risk factors for recurrent colic. Results: In total, 59 cases and 177 controls were included. The final model showed that horses that displayed crib-biting/windsucking (odds ratio [OR] 10.1, 95% confidence interval [CI] 2.5-41.0) or weaving behaviour (OR 3.9, 95% CI 1.5-10.1) had an increased risk of recurrence of colic. Increasing time at pasture reduced the risk of recurrence (OR 0.99, 95% CI 0.99-1.0). A significant interaction was found suggesting that the risk associated with crib-biting/windsucking may be modified by feeding fruit/vegetables; however, further research is required before recommendations for feeding practices can be made. Conclusions: This study suggests that sufficient access to pasture may be an important means of reducing recurrent colic risk. The behavioural risk factors highlight individuals who may be at increased risk of recurrent colic and whose colic prevention strategies should be carefully managed.

Item Type: Article
Divisions : Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences > School of Veterinary Medicine
Authors :
Scantlebury, CE
Archer, DC
Pinchbeck, GL
Date : 1 March 2015
DOI : 10.1111/evj.12276
Additional Information : This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Scantlebury CE, Archer DC, Proudman CJ, Pinchbeck GL. Management and horse-level risk factors for recurrent colic in the UK general equine practice population. Equine Vet J 47(2):202-206 Mar 2015, which has been published in final form at
Depositing User : Symplectic Elements
Date Deposited : 04 Mar 2015 10:30
Last Modified : 06 Jul 2019 05:14

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