Epiglottic Entrapment in the racehorse

Upper airway disease is second only to lameness as the most significant performance-limiting condition in the racehorse.

The conditions of the upper condition can be dynamic, changing as horses grow and develop, as well as manageable with tack, conditions, and fitness. The epiglottis is a triangular shaped cartilage that is positioned in front of the larynx and sits above the soft palate.

Epiglottic entrapment occurs in up to 3 per cent of horses with airway obstruction, when the loose tissue beneath the epiglottis (subepiglottic mucosa) finds itself positioned over the cartilage, interfering with normal airflow and function.