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Re: [RC] Scratches/Photosensitivity - steelsidedown

Not arguing, but how do you tell the difference between photosensitivity and 
just plain sunburn and/or dew poisoning?

I'm not understanding how photosensitivity is effecting the back of the 
pasterns where light rarely shines...?  


Photosensitivity is a serious thing.  It's not just superficial.  Preventing
the scratches and stuff on the face (or other pink areas of skin) is not
solving the problem.  Here's an excerpt from a Cattle magazine (one can find
many articles related to horses as well, but this one explains it most
clearly and succinctly):


"Springtime brings the warming sun and lush plant growth, but it can also
bring danger to some grazing animals. The culprits are certain plants that
result in a skin disease called photosensitization.

Eating these plants makes some grazing animals more sensitive to the sun.
The penetration of light into the sensitized skin causes cell death,
swelling and itching. Patches of skin may even slough off.

The damage is due to sensitization of unpigmented skin, which is unprotected
from ultraviolet rays, according to Stan Casteel, a veterinary toxicologist
at the University of Missouri.

The cause of this reaction, says Salmon, ID, veterinarian Robert Cope, is
usually plants that create liver damage.

"When the liver malfunctions, toxins build up instead of being filtered out
and some get in the blood," says Cope. When these toxins get in the blood
they cause photosensitization when they reach the skin, he adds.

Iowa State University toxicologist Tom Carson agrees. In an animal with a
damaged liver, normal body metabolism may cause photosensitization because
by-products of plant digestion accumulate in the skin instead of being
cleared through the liver, he says."





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[RC] Scratches/Photosensitivity, Karen Standefer