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See detailInvestigation of the death of calves after epileptiform seizures associated with metabolic disorders
Chevalier, Marine; Lebreton, Pascal; Garnier, Catherine et al

in Cattle Practice (2014), 22(1), 10-16

Death of calves after epileptiform seizures can be caused by metabolic disorders including hypomagnesaemia, although a range of other conditions may also be implicated and therefore also warrant ... [more ▼]

Death of calves after epileptiform seizures can be caused by metabolic disorders including hypomagnesaemia, although a range of other conditions may also be implicated and therefore also warrant investigation. Hypomagnesaemia is primarily observed in herds where calves are fed exclusively with either milk or milk substitute products. Hyperparathyroidism is associated with congestion and hypertrophy of the parathyroid gland and causes both hypercalcaemia and hypophosphataemia. However, its exact aetiology currently remains unclear. The purpose of this study was to explain epileptiform seizures in calves from a cattle herd presenting both deaths and decreased average daily gain (ADG). A Montbeliard herd with calves presenting epileptiform seizures from the age of five weeks was studied. The herd consisted of 39 cows and 46 calves. Tachycardia, nervousness and trampling, violent seizures of tetany lasting approximately 15 minutes were all observed, while opisthotonos was observed in 5 calves. Three of the latter calves died. The remaining calves presented a decreased ADG. Blood and urine biochemical assays were performed on 8 sick calves to determine the aetiology of the clinical signs. The assays revealed normo/hyper-calcaemia, hypophosphataemia and hypomagnesaemia, as well as hypocalciuria, hyperphosphaturia and hypomagnesuria. Deficiencies in iodine, iron and vitamins A, D3 and E were also reported in the herd. These calves could potentially be suffering from hyperparathyroidism. Hyperparathyroidism results in hypomagnesaemia, hypovitaminosis-A and, on occassion, hypercalcaemia and hypophosphataemia. This condition can lead to seizures, muscular problems, heart attacks and anorexia. The simultaneous occurrence of hypomagnesaemia, hyperparathyroidism and hypovitaminosis-A has been never described in related research literature. This is, therefore, in all likelihood a new metabolic disorder facing young cattle. Blood and urine biochemical assays are important tools for the detection of this pathological entity in calves. A dosage of parathyroid hormone (PTH) by the enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay (EIA) method using a kit suitable for cattle can be used to detect hyperparathyroidism. [less ▲]

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See detailSuccessful reduction of cholelithiasis in a holstein cow
Lamain, Guillaume; Frisee, Vincent ULg; Ramery, Eve ULg et al

in Cattle Practice (2012), 20(1), 93-98

A pregnant 3.5 year-old high-productive Holstein cow in the third month of lactation showed colic signs, marked anorexia, and stopped milk production. Clinical examination revealed tachypnea, pyrexia and ... [more ▼]

A pregnant 3.5 year-old high-productive Holstein cow in the third month of lactation showed colic signs, marked anorexia, and stopped milk production. Clinical examination revealed tachypnea, pyrexia and the mucous membranes were all congested. Signs of abdominal discomfort were observed, the abdomen was tense and painful; digestive activity was poor. Blood investigations revealed inflammation, cholestasis, and leucocytosis with marked neutrophilia. Trans-abdominal ultrasonography revealed decreased digestive transit and enlarged gall-bladder. Hepatic or biliary involvement was suspected. A right-flank exploratory laparotomy revealed a gallbladder filled with firm and mobile 0.5 to 1cm diameter fluctuant masses. Digital palpation allowed cholelith extraction through the cystic duct into the duodenum. After the surgery, the cow progressively regained a normal appetite and pain signs decreased. Blood samples analysed 10 days after the surgery still showed inflammation but to a lesser extent. Hepatic enzymes were markedly increased, indicating hepatic injury. Three months after the surgery, the cow was healthy and was inseminated. This case report suggests that cholelithiasis may be diagnosed and successfully treated in early stage of the disease in cattle, though this condition is rare in this species. This is the second report of manual cholelith extraction in a cow. [less ▲]

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See detailCase Report: Two Cases of Ocular form of Listeriosis in Cattle Herds
Guyot, Hugues ULg

in Cattle Practice (2011), 19(1), 61-64

Nowadays, the widespread use of silage has led to an increased frequency of bacterial contamination of Listeria spp in ruminants. The infection of ruminants is essentially linked to the consumption of ... [more ▼]

Nowadays, the widespread use of silage has led to an increased frequency of bacterial contamination of Listeria spp in ruminants. The infection of ruminants is essentially linked to the consumption of silage of poor quality or of milk products. The disease is frequent and severe in ruminants and can be present in various forms: nervous, septicaemic, genital, mastitis and ocular. The ocular form of Listeriosis can serve as a sentinel for the disease at the herd level. In this case report, 2 herds were investigated for calves and adult mortalities. In the first case, a large majority of the calves presented with hypopion but neurological examination of the calves revealed no abnormalities. The majority of the dairy cows also presented with ocular disorders but neurological examination did not reveal any abnormalities. Calves received whole milk from the dairy herd. The dairy herd diet comprised maize and grass silage, and cereals. Listeria monocytogenes was found in milk and grass silage in significant amounts. In the second case, weight loss, abortions and mortalities in adult cattle were reported. Fifty percent of animals examined presented with hypopion, and/or keratoconjunctivitis, and/or uveitis. No neurological abnormality was found. The animals’ ration of was comprised grass and maize silages. The grass silage had poor macroscopical aspect. Analysis revealed the presence of Schizophyllum commune (fungus) and L. monocytogenes in significant amounts. Furthermore, analysis of aborted foetuses also showed L. monocytogenes. Listeria infection in cattle can occur through ingestion of contaminated silage but calves can also be infected throughout the dams’milk. Ocular lesions are not pathognomonic for Listeriosis but, accompanied with abortions and poor quality silage, this can be a major indication for ancillary exams for Listeria monocytogenes at a herd level. [less ▲]

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See detailSigns of neurotoxicity in a Belgian Blue herd after ingestion of moulded silage
Guyot, Hugues ULg; Sandersen, Charlotte ULg; Brihoum, Mounir ULg et al

in Cattle Practice (2011), 19(1), 57-60

After ingestion of moulded beet pulp silage, cases of cerebro-cortical necrosis (CCN) and mortalities were observed in a dual purpose Belgian Blue (BB) herd. Contamination with Paecilomyces spp., a mould ... [more ▼]

After ingestion of moulded beet pulp silage, cases of cerebro-cortical necrosis (CCN) and mortalities were observed in a dual purpose Belgian Blue (BB) herd. Contamination with Paecilomyces spp., a mould that produces byssochlamic acid, malformins and patulin, was proven. Twenty-five days after progressive introduction of beet pulp silage into the ration, most of the animals showed diminished appetite, excessive salivation and decreased milk production. Some of them showed anorexia, head pressing and blindness while 4 animals died within 1 week after onset of neurological symptoms. The survivors had been treated successfully with thiamine and recovered completely within five days. Once the beet pulp silage had been identified as causative agent, it was removed from the animals’ ration and no more clinical cases were observed. Silage was obviously moulded and analysis revealed the presence of 1.6 million CFU Paecilomyces spp./g of silage. Although no further investigation was undertaken to identify the mycotoxins, intoxication with patulin was suspected, since other mycotoxins produced by these species are less toxic. Although it has not been described that CCN can be induced by ingestion of Paecilomyces spp., it seems that there is a close relation between ingestion of Paecilomyces-contaminated silage and clinical signs observed in this herd. [less ▲]

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See detailA therapeutic strategy for treatment of the bovine respiratory disease complex: The rationale for the combination of a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug with an antibiotic
Lekeux, Pierre ULg

in Cattle Practice (2007), 15(Part 2), 115-119

The bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) can be caused by a number of factors involving the animal, its environment, and the presence of infectious agents. The syndrome can be classified into four ... [more ▼]

The bovine respiratory disease complex (BRDC) can be caused by a number of factors involving the animal, its environment, and the presence of infectious agents. The syndrome can be classified into four grades: Grade 1, subclinical disease; Grade 2, compensated clinical disease; Grade 3, noncompensated clinical disease; and Grade 4, irreversible clinical disease, which threatens the animal's survival. The predisposition of cattle, especially beef calves, to respiratory problems is related to their lack of functional pulmonary hardiness. Selection of breeds that demonstrate adequate pulmonary function and sufficient ventilatory reserve may help in the control of BRDC, but this approach is difficult to implement and slow to produce results. Prophylactic measures, including vaccination programmes and modifying management practices to reduce stress, also have a place in prevention of BRDC. A therapeutic strategy to minimise the economic impact of BRDC includes the use of appropriate antibacterial therapy, modulation of the pulmonary inflammatory reaction, and correction of mechanical disorders. Most cattle affected by BRDC are classified as Grade 3. In these cases, irreversible damage to the lung can only be avoided by simultaneous control of bacterial infection and local inflammation. The basic therapeutic strategy described in this article involves the combination of an antibiotic, such as florfenicol, to act against the relevant pathogens and a nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug (NSAID), such as flunixin, to act against the deleterious effects of inflammation [less ▲]

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See detailThyrotropin in newborn calves as a tool for diagnosing hypothyroidism
Guyot, Hugues ULg; Lebreton, Pascal; Alves de Oliveira, Laurent et al

in Cattle Practice (2007), 15(Part 3), 271-275

The hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis is of particular importance for the adaptation of mammals to their environment. Hypothyroidism is the most common type of thyroid disorders in cattle. Thyrotropin ... [more ▼]

The hypothalamic-pituitary-thyroid axis is of particular importance for the adaptation of mammals to their environment. Hypothyroidism is the most common type of thyroid disorders in cattle. Thyrotropin (TSH) is used in several mammalian species for the diagnosis of primary hypothyroidism. Currently in cattle, thyroid hormone assays are used to diagnose such disease. The aim of the study was to compare different tools for diagnosing hypothyroidism in newborn calves. Twelve goitrous newborn calves from two beef herds were studied as well as 45 healthy newborn calves. Bovine TSH, thyroxine (T4), tri-iodothyronine (T3), reverse-T3 (rT3), plasmatic inorganic iodine (PII) and glutathione peroxidase in erythrocytes (GPXe) were assayed in these calves during the first day of life. T4/T3 and T4/TSH ratio were calculated. Furthermore, TSH, T4, PII and GPXe were also assayed in their dams at calving. Results were analysed using Wilcoxon rank sum test and Spearman's rank correlation coefficient. A significant higher value (P < 0.01) of TSH was seen for the group of goitrous calves compared to healthy calves. There was no difference between healthy and goitrous calves for GPXe (P > 0.1) and PII (P > 0.05). Significantly higher values were seen for healthy calves compared to goitrous calves concerning T4, T4/T3 ratio, T4/TSH ratio, rT3 (P < 0.0 1) and T3 (P < 0.05). Regarding the group of goitrous calves, those that had larger goitre at palpation and were hairless (n=8) died within the first day of life while the four other with moderate goitre and normal hair stayed alive. Goitrous-dead calves had higher TSH values than goitrous-alive ones (P < 0.01), lower T4, T3, T4/TSH (P < 0.0 1) and rT3 (P < 0.05) but similar T4/T3 ratio (P > 0.1). Furthermore, it appeared that T4 and rT3 values in goitrous-alive calves were not different compared to healthy calves (P > 0.1). Regarding TSH (rho=0.44), T4 (rho=-0.44), PII (rho=0.70) and GPXe (rho=0.87), there was a correlation between healthy calves and their dams, with significantly higher values being found in the calves (P < 0.01). There was no correlation between values of TSH and T4 in goitrous calves and their dams (P > 0.1). However, for these animals there was a strong relationship in the values of PH (rho=0.82) and GPXe (rho=0.94) (P < 0.01). TSH, PII and GPXe were significantly higher in goitrous calves compared to their dams (P < 0.01). Regarding T4, only goitrous-dead calves showed significantly lower values than their dams (P < 0.01). Dams with goitrous calves had higher TSH (P < 0.01) and PII (P < 0.05) compared to dams with healthy calves but similar T4 and GPXe (P > 0.1). This study revealed that TSH alone is a good marker for hypothyroidism in newborn calves. In the absence of TSH assay, the T4/T3 ratio may be used to diagnose hypothyroidism in newborn calves. In our study, although T4/T3 ratio was helpful in identifying goitrous calves, it did not allow to discriminate goitrous-dead from goitrous-alive calves, contrary to TSH. In our study, the presence of a goitre in newborn calves could not be explained by the iodine (PII) and thyroid (via T4) status of their dams. [less ▲]

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See detailRecent developments in infectious bovine rhinotracheitis
Thiry, Etienne ULg; Lemaire, Mylène; Keuser, Véronique et al

in Cattle Practice (2002), 10

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See detailField evaluation of pregnancy diagnosis using bovine pregnancy-associated glycoprotein (bPAG)
Skinner, J. G.; Gray, D.; Gebbie, F. E. et al

in Cattle Practice (1996), 4(3), 281-284

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