Broken wind is a syndrome characterised by chronic bronchitis and alveolar emphysema. Clinical signs include nasal catarrh, persistent coughing, dyspnoea and poor exercise tolerance. In racehorses, lung haemorrhages may result in epistaxis. Broken wind is a disease of domestication ascribed to pollution of the stable air with fungal spores from hay and straw. Treatment and prevention are based on the provision of fresh air and, if housing is unavoidable, the adoption of a permanent regime of dust-free stable management. If an early diagnosis is made and appropriate treatment instituted, the prognosis is considered to be reasonably good. The disease exemplifies the validity of the Royal Veterinary College motto Venienti occurrite morbo (treat the disease at its first appearance).
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