Journal of Veterinary Medicine / 2014 / Article / Tab 4

Research Article

Effects of Experimental Sarcocystis neurona-Induced Infection on Immunity in an Equine Model

Table 4

Neurologic scoring sheet for observations of clinical parameters (total possible 97).

CategoryActionDescriptionNumberDescription 2

EatingDrops feed<1/4 lb1(max = 3)
≥1/4 lb ≤ 1/2 lb2
>1/2 lb3
Tongue tone decreasedNormal mastication1(max = 3)
Abnormal mastication2
Paresis3
Abnormal feed prehensionNormal0(max = 2)
Unable to masticate1
Bites food2

HeadDroolingDoes not drool0(max = 2)
When eating1
Continuously2
Lip paresisNormal0(max = 3)
Perceptible when eating1
Perceptible continuously2
Lip hangs3
Facial nerve paresisNormal0(max = 3)
Perceptible1
Moderate2
Severe3
Eyelid paresisNormal0(max = 3)
Ventrally away from eye1
Over of eye2
With corneal lesion3
AttitudeNormal0(max = 3)
Depressed1
Aggressive2
Somnolent3

MuscleMuscle atrophyNormal0(max = 3)
Just perceptible1
Immediately noticeable2
Severe atrophy3

Rear endCauda equinaNormal0(max = 3)
Holds tail rigid1
Dribbling urine2
Rectum paretic3

MovementWeaknessNormal0Left fore (LF),
right fore (RF),
left hind (LH),
right hind (RH)
(max = 12)
While walking1
Markedly reduced strength2
Can pull horse over easily/recumbent3
LamenessNone seen0 (max = 3)
Just noticed at walk1
Head bob or hip drop at walk2
Reluctant to use limb3

Conscious proprioceptionCrossing over limbsNormal0LF, RF, LH, RH
(max = 12)
Slightly slow to place limb 1
back to normal position
No resistance to abnormal placement of limb2
Horse unaware of limb position and unable to correctly place limb3
Abduction of hind limbsNormal0LH, RH (max = 6)
Slightly slow to place limb back to normal position1
No resistance to abnormal placement of limb2
Horse unaware of limb position and unable to correctly place limb3
TrippingNone seen0(max = 3)
Sometimes1
Often2
Often and falls to knees3

LimbsParesisNormal0(max = 3)
Detectable at normal gaits but exacerbated by manipulative actions1
Obvious at normal gaits or postures2
Very prominent at normal gait3
CirclingNormal0Counterclockwise, clockwise (max = 6)
Occasional abnormal limb placement1
Does not move normally in circle2
Refuses to circle/falls3
Pivoting No pivoting seen0Counterclockwise, clockwise (max = 6)
Pivots occasionally on inside hind limb1
Pivots frequently2
Will not pick up hind leg-pivots continuously3
Toe draggingNo toe dragging seen0Left, Right (max = 6)
Occasionally drags a hind limb1
Frequently drags hind limb2
Constantly drags hind limbs3

Backing upHypermetriaNormal movement0(max = 3)
Slightly hypermetric in one limb1
Moderately hypermetric in one limb/slight hypermetria in both hind limbs2
Very obvious hypermetria3
Inconsistent placementNormal placement0 (max = 3)
Slightly wide based on placement of hind limbs1
Wide based on hind limb placement2
Places limbs very abnormally (touching, very wide), almost falls3

Tail pull At the walkNormal0Left, Right (max = 6)
Slight lack of resistance to tail pull1
Easily pull horse off track2
Horse almost falls when tail pulled3

Maximum total possible97

Horses were examined biweekly and scored based on a variety of different parameters, listed above. For most categories, a score of zero represented a normal response to evaluation of this parameter, and a score of three was the maximum neurologic score possible. The scoring system was based on that used in previous experiments by investigators using the intravenous method of infection.

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