Poster Title

Trotting All Over the Navicular: The Effect of Environmental Variables on Navicular Syndrome in Horses.

Grade Level at Time of Presentation

Secondary School

Institution

Project Lead The Way - Kentucky

KY House District #

14

KY Senate District #

8

Abstract

Navicular Syndrome is a condition affecting horses that can cause lameness. It leads to the degradation of a bone in the feet, called the navicular bone, and one or more of the attached ligaments. It can also cause calcification of the ligaments, or cyst‐like lesions within the bone. The disease and accompanying pain account for the lameness. Some research suggests breed or certain environmental conditions may increase the risk of Navicular Syndrome occurring in horses. Some of these include housing on hard or inclined surfaces, or the amount of calcium, phosphorus, or magnesium in a horse’s diet. I intend to investigate these conditions among 10 local horses of varying breed, 3 of which have been diagnosed with Navicular Syndrome. I will then compare these environmental and genetic characteristics between the groups with and without Navicular Syndrome. I hypothesize more athletic horses, horses kept on hard surfaces, horses kept on inclined surfaces and horses with mineral deficient diets will be more likely to have the condition. Navicular Syndrome impacts a lot of today’s horses and is like osteoporosis in humans; it causes many of the same discomforts and is equally incurable. Though it may not be curable, it may be preventable or there may be measures that can make the condition easier on horses and their owners. I am hopeful this research can contribute to increasing the quality of life for horses with this condition.

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Trotting All Over the Navicular: The Effect of Environmental Variables on Navicular Syndrome in Horses.

Navicular Syndrome is a condition affecting horses that can cause lameness. It leads to the degradation of a bone in the feet, called the navicular bone, and one or more of the attached ligaments. It can also cause calcification of the ligaments, or cyst‐like lesions within the bone. The disease and accompanying pain account for the lameness. Some research suggests breed or certain environmental conditions may increase the risk of Navicular Syndrome occurring in horses. Some of these include housing on hard or inclined surfaces, or the amount of calcium, phosphorus, or magnesium in a horse’s diet. I intend to investigate these conditions among 10 local horses of varying breed, 3 of which have been diagnosed with Navicular Syndrome. I will then compare these environmental and genetic characteristics between the groups with and without Navicular Syndrome. I hypothesize more athletic horses, horses kept on hard surfaces, horses kept on inclined surfaces and horses with mineral deficient diets will be more likely to have the condition. Navicular Syndrome impacts a lot of today’s horses and is like osteoporosis in humans; it causes many of the same discomforts and is equally incurable. Though it may not be curable, it may be preventable or there may be measures that can make the condition easier on horses and their owners. I am hopeful this research can contribute to increasing the quality of life for horses with this condition.