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What is EPM?

How a Horse Gets EPM

EPM In Horses

EPM stands for Equine Protozoal Myeloencephalitis. This is a disease that affects the brain and spinal cord. It’s caused by the microbe, Sarcocystis neurona, commonly found in the opossum.

The disease is not transmitted from horse to horse. Rather, the protozoa are spread by the definitive host, the opossum, which acquires the organism from cats, raccoons, skunks and armadillos and possibly even from harbor seals and sea otters. The infective stage of the organism (the sporocysts) is passed in the opossum’s feces. The horse comes into contact with the infective sporocysts while grazing or eating contaminated feed or drinking water.
Some common symptoms include incoordination, stiff or stilted movements, and abnormal gait or lameness. Other symptoms include muscle atrophy, drooping eyes, difficulty swallowing, abnormal sweating, head tilt with poor balance, and loss of feeling along the face, neck or body.
Fortunately, about 60-70% of horses will improve with the proper treatment. The sooner treatment begins, the better the horse’s chances are for recovery. If not treated properly, the disease can result in death.

Common Signs of EPM

  • Asymmetric Stride Length
  • Muscle Atrophy
  • Signs of brain disease such as a tilted head, beating movements of the eyes, or paralysis of one side of the face
  • Toe dragging
  • Hypometria of the forelimbs
  • Circumduction of the hindlimbs
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Veteran Owned

Veteran Owned and Operated

On behalf of Total Toltrazuril, we like to thank all of the brave servicemen and servicewomen in the United States Military, and will always keep you in our prayers for your safe return. For those of you who have served and are back, thank you for the time you have dedicated and sacrificed for our great country!


Consult Your Veterinarian Before Use

Before using this product, obtain a veterinary diagnosis for Coccidiosis or EPM in animals.