EHV-1 outbreak in Maryland leaves one horse dead, 44 potentially exposed

The farm in Montgomery County has been placed under quarantine by the state department of agriculture.

microscopic view of equine herpes virus (EHV-1)
How and why Equine Herpesvirus type-1 causes neurological disease is still unknown.

A horse in Montgomery County, Maryland, was euthanatized earlier this month due to complications from equine herpes virus type-1 (EHV-1). Two additional horses from the same barn tested positive for the virus and a total of 44 horses are potentially exposed, according to information provided by the Equine Disease Communication Center (EDCC).

EHV-1 most often causes mild-to-moderate respiratory illness (rhinopneumonitis), but the infection occasionally leads to the life-threatening neurologic disease equine herpesvirus myeloencephalopathy (EHM). The mechanisms through which EHV-1 produces neurologic disease are not yet understood.

Click here to learn more about the neurologic form of EHV-1

According to the EDCC, the farm “has been placed on a hold order by the [Maryland Department of Agriculture], prohibiting movement on or off the farm until any exposed horses have been cleared for release…The veterinary practitioner and stable are providing follow-up care to the horses on the farm. Possible links to the positive EHV-1 equine are actively being investigated. Owners are cautioned to monitor horses carefully, and should contact their private veterinarians to arrange for EHV-1 testing if a horse exhibits significant temperature elevations or neurologic signs.”

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