Head shaking: to CT or not to CT?

14 Nov 2019
RVC Equine Theatre 1

Head shaking also known as idiopathic headshaking or trigeminal-mediated headshaking is a condition that can affect up to 1% of the equine population. Affected horses usually present a vertical movement of the head, with clinical signs often affected by exercise regimen and seasonability. When frequent and pronounced it can negatively influence riding or even handling the horse. After reviewing the main presentation/clinical signs, we will look at current diagnostic tools used in head shakers with a special emphasis on head CT. Finally, we will review cases of horses referred to the RVC for head CT on suspicion of head shaking over the last few years and discuss main diagnostic findings.

  • Understand the different diagnostics tool available for head shaking
  • Appreciate when best to refer a horse for head CT
  • Understand the findings of head CT on head shaker
Melanie Perrier, Lecturer in Soft Tissue Surgery - Royal Veterinary College

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