Combination deworming for the control of double-resistant cyathostomin parasites – short and long term consequences

J. A. Scare, E. T. Lyons, K. M. Wielgus, M. K. Nielsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Scopus citations


Equine cyathostomin are pervasive gastrointestinal parasites with wide-spread resistance to the benzimidazole and tetrahydropyrimidine drug classes worldwide. Combination deworming has been proposed as a more sustainable parasite control strategy. Simulation studies have found combination deworming to be effective in controlling drug resistant ovine trichostrongylid parasites. One equine study demonstrated an additive effect of a combination of oxibendazole and pyrantel pamoate against cyathostomins. However, this is the only equine study evaluating combination therapy, and the effects of repeated combination treatments administered over time remain unknown. The purpose of this study was to observe the efficacy of repeated oxibendazole/pyrantel pamoate combination therapy administered over one year against a cyathostomin population with resistance to benzimidazole and pyrantel products. Fecal egg counts were determined for the entire herd (N = 21) at the day of anthelmintic treatment and at two-week intervals for eight weeks post treatment. Starting efficacies of oxibendazole (OBZ, 10 mg/kg) and pyrantel pamoate (PYR, 6.6 mg base/kg) were 66.7% and 63.3%, respectively. Hereafter, the herd was treated four times with an oxibendazole/pyrantel pamoate combination, eight weeks apart, followed by repeating the single active treatments before concluding the study. While the first combination treatment exhibited an additive effect of the two active ingredients, this efficacy was not sustained over the course of the study. Mean fecal egg count reduction (FECR) was significantly greater for the first combination treatment (76.6%) than the second (42.6%, p = 0.0454), third (41.6%, p = 0.0318), and fourth (40.7%, p = 0.0372) combination treatments. The final single active mean FECRs were 42.3% for oxibendazole, and 42.7% for pyrantel pamoate. These efficacies were not significantly different from the initial single active efficacies (OBZ, p = 0.4421; PYR, p = 0.8361). These results suggest that combination therapy against double resistant equine cyathostomin populations is not sustainable, when using actives with markedly decreased starting efficacies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)112-118
Number of pages7
JournalVeterinary Parasitology
StatePublished - Feb 15 2018

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2018 Elsevier B.V.


  • Combination
  • Cyathostomin
  • Deworming
  • Efficacy
  • Equine
  • Oxibendazole
  • Pyrantel

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Parasitology
  • General Veterinary


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