Those that have had foals who needed plasma transfers

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Well-Known Member
Nov 30, 2002
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Oklahoma City, OK
Those who have had foals that needed plasma transfers, did your vet transfer more than once? Did you have multiple IgG's done and if so when?
We had a colt several years ago who needed plasma a couple of times to really jumpstart him. I assume they did another IgG on him, can't remember for sure. One of our fillies this year had a somewhat low IgG the first time but was nursing good at that point (about 12 - 14 hours) so we waited and pulled another the next morning, and it was fine / no plasma needed on her.

Those who have had foals that needed plasma transfers, did your vet transfer more than once? Did you have multiple IgG's done and if so when?
I had a filly whose dam's milk didn't come in. Initially the vet tubed her some colostrum then the next day he did the IgG test. It was low so he did a plasma transfusion. The next day he did another IgG and it was good so she didn't need any more plasma. He gave the foal an N-G tube and I had to ''feed" her thru it every 2 hours round the clock. I kept her with her dam and eventually, after about the 3rd or 4th day, the mare's milk came in and the foal did fine. I never bred that mare again. I was afraid to.
Becky, we had a filly last year that tested low on her IgG. We test all our babies. Doc said he could give her colostrum, and retest the next morning, or do a plasma transufion. He said the plasma was the only sure way to get the antibodies in her, and she was pretty close to the end of the window of opportunity, so he transfused her, and that was the end of it. She's a sassy little thing, living in Texas now!

We had a 6-week early preemie whose initial IGG was 400. He was at the University in Stillwater and they gave him a plasma transfer and did another IGG test and it was still slightly less than 800 so they did a second plasma transfer and that brought him up to an acceptable level.
We've only had one - a premie - who needed a plasma transfer, and it was like he transformed within a couple of hours! His IGG was in the 400 range and after the transfer it jumped to over 800.

I do know that just a week or so ago Jill of Whinny For Me Farms posted that she had a foal who needed more than one plasma transfer.....(I think?) You might look her up and ask.
My filly, Passion (Whinny For Me's Passionately Dun) had the first IgG done the morning she was born (on vet's second trip to "visit" her as one had been out after birth to put a feeding tube in). That showed she didn't have enough IgG and was Friday morning. Got first plasma transfusion then and the vet came back out Saturday morning, repeated the IgG and she was improved but not where we wanted her so she had a second transfusion. The vet came out on Sunday afternoon and did the 3rd IgG test which showed Passion was where she needed to be so she didn't require a 3rd plasma transusion.

The IgG plasma we used had to be defrosted and once it is defrosted, it is only good for 24 hours. If Passion needed a 3rd transfusion, we'd have had to defrost another bag. The bags were $300/each not counting th vet's time / skill of running the IV. Took a real long time to get each transfusion in as Passion would shake and just had to take it slow.

We had another vet situation unrelated to Passion about a week prior, but Passion's part of the vet bill, which including one 2am hour visit at my place for feeding tube, 2 long visits to plasma transfuse, 1 short vet visit to re-do IgG, 2 vials Naxcel, and God I can't remember all what else was "only" about $2,000. When you consider all those trips to my place and the time the vets spent with us, I think it's a bargain. It would take a lot more than that in terms of money to get me out 4x (one in the middle of the night) to do something for one of my clients. We're so lucky vets do what they do, and for the price they do it.

Reading here of the the years just drives home how lucky I am to have a great vet practice for four vets I love and can get one out to my house any time of day or not 365 days a year usually within 45minutes. Also, they have whatever we need on hand and with them when they arrive at my place (including that plasma).
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Thanks, guys, for your response!

I'm running a mare and foal to the vet clinic this morning for a second transfer on the colt. He had one on Sat (IgG at 200) and the second IgG still showed him to be under 600. I hope it works this time!
We had a filly two years ago that had one. She spent the weekend at the clinic and I believe she got plasma more than once, but that could have also been since once they opened the bag they had to use it and didn't want it to go to waste (at $250 a bag, I agree!!)

She's a fat and sassy 2YO now.


I had a foal this year that needed several plasma transfers - actually went thru 2 bags of full size horse plasma in 2 days -- I did end up losing the foal, but it was more due to septicemia than anything else. If your foal is still low on his IgG count you might start him on a treatment of antibiotics - there might be something "lurking" there. My foal's count would spike after a transfer and then come way back down again. 2 Days at the clinic -- $3500

Good luck - keep us posted!

The colt had his second plasma transfer this afternoon and the vet wanted to keep him overnight and run another IgG tomorrow. I sure hope his antibody levels come up on this one!
BEcky- Sorry to hear your little guy is needing a bit extra help along the way. Wishing you the best and hope tomorrow brings good news.

I'm guardedly optimistic, but I picked up the mare and foal from the vet clinic late this afternoon. As of this afternoon, the colts' IgG level is over 900!

I haven't even taken any pictures yet, but the colt is a silver frame overo out of my Lazy N Red Boy daughter, Cross Country Miss Behavin and sired by the Lazy N Red Boy son, Cross Country Native Dancer. The colt looks to be really nice.

Pics next week when I return from this weekends show.
Good luck with baby getting better...ours from last month had 2 plasma transfers but unfortuantly it wasn't meant to be due to more issues cropping up. The second foal not as serious only required 60cc's by mouth over the course of a few hours and her lgG shot right up to almost 800 by the next morning..

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