Cytological and microbiological findings in guttural pouch lavages of clinically normal horses with head restraint

O. A. Chiesa, R. Cuenca, E. Mayayo, J. Guarro, J. Santamaria, A. M. Stchigel

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7 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: To evaluate the cytological and microbiological contents of guttural pouch washes of ten randomly selected horses restrained so as to prevent them lowering their heads, and to assess the possible effects on the guttural pouch environment in these horses. Procedure: Cytological and microbiological studies were performed on guttural pouch washes of ten clinically normal horses restrained in a standing position so as to prevent them from lowering their heads below normal, as would happen during transportation on long journeys. They were restrained for 12 or 24 h and cytological, bacteriological and mycological findings in guttural pouch washes were recorded. Results: The cytological gradings and neutrophil concentrations of guttural pouch washings were higher in horses that had their heads restrained for a longer period. Washings from these horses were more likely to contain cultivable bacteria and were the only washes yielding potentially pathogenic bacterial species. Conclusion: Variation in the cytological differential counts and bacterial cultures of guttural pouch lavages may be found in clinically normal horses which have had their heads restrained in an elevated position for periods from 12 to 24 h. This should be considered when examining this site and care must be taken when interpreting cytology of guttural pouch lavages in samples taken after transportation for more than 12 h. Restriction of head movement could also affect the normal pouch enviroment and predispose it to disease.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)234-238
JournalAustralian Veterinary Journal
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2002


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