Swine Erysipela


Swine Erysipelas

Description, Causes and Risk Factors:

Abbreviation: SE.

Alternative name: Diamond skin disease.

Erysipelas is a bacterial disease of pigs that can also occur in turkey and sheep. It is caused by the organism Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae or Erysipelothrix insidiosa, which is wide spread in the environment and carried by many wild animal without being evident. The pigs is particular susceptible to it and, in the absence of vaccination the disease can be a major problem.

Once the bacteria enter the animal, the bacteria can take one of several forms or a combination of these forms: acute erysipelas, skin erysipelas (diamond skin disease), arthritic erysipelas, or heart erysipelas.

The organism can persist for extended periods in the tonsils of apparently normal swine and can be transferred by direct contact. Outbreaks are usually more severe in herds on dirt and during periods of wet weather Swine between the ages of 3 months and 3 years are most susceptible to erysipelas.

Transmission may occur through direct or indirect contact. E. insidiosa infects naturally pigs, mice, birds, fish, etc. The agent can persist in the environment for long periods and survive in marine conditions. Transmission to nonhuman primates has been related to contact to avian species, especially raptors, or to contamination of climbing structures by bird droppings.

Human infection is acquired through direct contact with the meat of infected animals, poultry, fish and shellfish. Infection can occur only if the person has an abrasion or cut that allows entry of the bacteria. People at risk include fisherman, farmers, butchers, abattoir workers, veterinary surgeons and cooks.

Symptoms:

Pigs suffer severe illness and fever (40°C+), lethargy, decreased appetite and the skin may become discolored or reddened to some degree - the ears and underline may become purple.Vomiting, diarrhea and discharges from the eyes may occur.Diamond-shaped red blotches appear on the skin, mainly about the abdomen. The blotches may fade and the pigs recover although in some cases wounds may be slow to heal.Arthritis affecting the knee, elbow, stifle, hock and hip joints may also occur. Sows may abort. A large number of pigs may die within days.

Diagnosis:

This is based on inappetence (lack of appetite) a very high temperature and the diamond shaped skin swellings which if present are diagnostic. If the diamond markings are not obvious to the eye they can be felt if the hand is run over the skin of the back or behind the back legs and over the flanks. SE is easily grown in the laboratory and post-mortems and culture of the organism from the sudden deaths will confirm the diagnosis.

Blood samples can be taken from the sow at the time of infection and again two weeks later and the antibody levels in the serum determined by the serum agglutination test. Titre levels of less than 1:60 would indicate sub-acute infection, low level exposure or a vaccine response. Titres of more than 1:320 would indicate recent exposure and a rising titre to tests, two weeks apart would help to confirm a diagnosis of disease. Serology however is not a reliable method of diagnosis; it only indicates exposure to the organism.

Treatment:

Acute outbreaks of erysipelas often respond to treatment with antibiotics, such as penicillin. While this may save the pig's life, the infection may persist. Consult your veterinarian before beginning treatment.

Pigs suffering from the arthritic form of erysipelas are generally regarded as incurable. Isolate affected animals. Burn carcasses and disinfect the area of the infected pigs' previous accommodation using caustic soda or hypochlorite solutions to prevent further transmission.

Routine vaccination is the best available means of controlling swing erysipelas; your veterinarian can recommend a suitable program. The vaccine raises the level of immunity, but does not provide complete protection.

Prevention can still be best accomplished by implementing good management practices and a sound vaccination program. According to the 1990 NAHMS (National Animal Health Monitoring System) survey, 61.4% of pork operations vaccinated for swine erysipelas. The NAHMS survey in 1995 found 56.2% of pork operations vaccinated for erysipelas. Prevention of erysipelas outbreaks cannot be accomplished without an appropriate vaccination program.

Disclaimer: The above information is educational purpose. The information provided herein should not be used during any medical emergency or for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition.

DISCLAIMER: This information should not substitute for seeking responsible, professional medical care.

0 Comments

Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Cart Preview

Flavonoids in Fruits and Vegetables May Preserve Lung Function

Flavonoids in Fruits and Vegetables May Preserve Lung Function

A new study from the US discovers that flavonoids, natural compounds found in fruits and vegetables, may help preserve the lung function, which tends to decline with age. For the study, a team of researchers looked at data from 463 adults from Norway and England whose...

Regular Exercising May Keep Your Heart and Main Arteries Young

Regular Exercising May Keep Your Heart and Main Arteries Young

According to a recent study, published in The Journal of Physiology, exercising four to five times per week may help stop the main arteries to the heart from stiffening up. The researchers from the US have found that those who exercise four to five times per week had...

Quiz about this article

Please answer on few questions to make our service more useful

Featured Products

Spring is Here: Top 6 Outdoor Sports

Good weather is the best reason to do outdoor sports, which will help not only lose weight, but also will strengthen health. Bicycle The sun dries out the local paths, so you can safely sit on your favorite bike and confidently twist the pedals, where the eyes look....

read more

First Aid in Case of Injuries for Sport and Exercise

First aid for injuries consists of simple rules that need to be clearly implemented. If this is a closed injury, you need to immobilize the injured limb, otherwise the person may lose consciousness from a painful shock. If you need to get to the emergency room...

read more