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Objective

To determine the association between a leak of sour natural gas (more than 30% hydrogen sulfide) from a pipeline in a river valley and the health of beef cattle in the intensively ranched surrounding area.

Design

Prospective cohort study.

Sample Population

13 herds of cattle within 4 km (2.5 miles) of the leak and 10 herds outside the 4-km zone.

Procedure

Distance of herds from the leak site was determined, using geographic information system technology. Information about speed and direction of winds was obtained from a local meteorologic station and an ambient air-quality monitoring trailer. Health and productivity data for surrounding beef herds, as well as exposure information, were collected and analyzed.

Results

An association was not found between total herd calf mortality and herd distance from the leak, wind-aided exposure, location in the river valley, signs of irritation consistent with exposure to the gas, or reports of odors of gas at the time of the leak. Management changes reported in response to the gas leak were identified as risk factors for total herd calf mortality. Other herd-level risk factors associated with increased calf mortality ratio included a median calving date in February and percentage of twin births for a herd.

Clinical Implications

In this example, we did not detect an association between productivity of cattle and exposure to sour natural gas. Several methods can be used for ranking potential exposure after discovery of a leak. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 1998;212:41–48)

Free access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To describe self-reported use of x-ray personal protective equipment (PPE) by veterinary workers in Saskatchewan, Canada, and to examine factors that affected their use of x-ray PPE.

DESIGN Cross-sectional survey.

SAMPLE 331 veterinary workers.

PROCEDURES A questionnaire was distributed to Saskatchewan veterinary workers electronically and by conventional mail. Recipients were encouraged to share the questionnaire with colleagues. The questionnaire consisted of questions regarding radiation safety practices used during small animal radiographic procedures, including frequency of use of dosimeters and lead aprons, thyroid shields, eyeglasses, and gloves. Respondents were also requested to provide suggestions for increasing use of PPE.

RESULTS 460 questionnaires were completed, of which 331 were returned by workers involved with performing radiographic procedures. Two hundred eighty-five of 331 (86%) respondents reported that at least 1 worker was always in the room during x-ray exposure, and 325 (98%), 291 (88%), and 9 (3%) respondents reported always wearing a lead apron, thyroid shield, and protective eyeglasses, respectively, during radiographic imaging. Two hundred seventeen of 327 (66%) respondents used lead gloves correctly less than half the time. Mean percentage of time that gloves were worn correctly was higher for workers who were required to do so by their employers than for those who were not.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested use of PPE during radiographic procedures can be increased by employers making PPE use mandatory. Other respondent-identified factors that would increase PPE use included the availability of properly fitting and functional PPE and education of workers about health risks associated with ionizing radiation exposure.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To describe animal owners' experiences with palliative radiation therapy (PRT) of pets and identify factors influencing satisfaction with their pets' treatment.

DESIGN Retrospective, cross-sectional study.

SAMPLE 118 owners of dogs, cats, or rabbits.

PROCEDURES Medical records were searched to identify animals that underwent PRT between 2004 and 2013. Signalment, tumor-related data, and outcome information were recorded. Owners completed an electronic survey assessing satisfaction with treatment (ie, satisfaction with the decision for their pet to undergo PRT and indication that they would choose PRT for their pet again), expectations regarding PRT, and perceptions of their pets' quality of life (QOL) and signs of discomfort from acute adverse radiation effects. Additional data regarding practical aspects of treatment, pet death, communications with veterinarians, and owner demographics were collected. Variables were tested for association with measures of owner satisfaction.

RESULTS 92 of 116 (79%) owners were satisfied with the decision to have their pets undergo PRT. Most (92/118 [78%]) owners reported their pet's QOL improved after PRT; these owners were significantly more likely to be satisfied than those who did not report improved QOL. Owners who perceived their pets had discomfort from adverse radiation effects (38/116 [33%]) were significantly less likely to be satisfied than owners who did not report this observation. Measures of satisfaction were not associated with patient survival time. Twenty-one of 118 (18%) owners indicated they expected PRT would cure their pet's tumor.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results suggested that short life expectancy should not deter recommendation of PRT for pets. Protocols that minimize risk of acute adverse effects may be advantageous. Veterinarians should attempt to ensure that owners understand the goals of PRT.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association

Abstract

Objective—To determine the prevalence of antibodies against a swine-origin Helicobacter pylori–like organism (HPLO) and H pylori in conventionally reared swine.

Animals—640 conventionally reared swine of various ages from 16 high-health farms in Canada, 20 sows from Ohio, and 35 gnotobiotic swine.

Procedures—Blood was collected from the cranial vena cava. Sera were collected and tested via ELISA for antibodies against antigen prepared from a swine-origin HPLO and human H pylori strain 26695.

Results—Antibodies reactive with a swine HPLO, H pylori, or both were detected in 483 of 640 swine from all 16 farms in western Canada. Seroprevalence varied with age and was low (5.6%) in suckling (≤ 4-week-old) swine and increasingly high in swine ranging from > 4 weeks old to adulthood.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Findings suggested that colonization by a swine-origin HPLO, H pylori, or both and resultant seroconversion, like that of H pylori infection in humans, were common in commercial swine operations. Furthermore, data indicated that gastric infection was acquired at an early age. The relationships to gastric colonization by HPLOs and clinical manifestations of disease such as gastritis and gastroesophageal ulceration remain to be determined.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To compare blood glucose (BG) concentrations measured with a portable blood glucose meter in blood samples obtained with a marginal ear vein (MEV) nick technique, from a peripheral venous catheter, and by direct venipuncture in healthy cats and cats with diabetes mellitus.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—10 healthy cats and 11 cats with diabetes mellitus.

Procedure—On day 1, blood samples were collected every hour for 10 hours by the MEV nick technique and from a peripheral venous catheter. On day 2, blood samples were collected every hour for 10 hours by the MEV nick technique and by direct venipuncture of the medial saphenous vein.

Results—For all cats, mean BG concentration for samples collected by the MEV nick technique was not significantly different from mean concentration for samples obtained from the peripheral venous catheter. For healthy cats, mean BG concentration for samples collected by the MEV nick technique was not significantly different from mean concentration for samples obtained by direct venipuncture. For cats with diabetes mellitus, mean BG concentration for samples collected by the MEV nick technique was significantly different from mean concentration for samples obtained by direct venipuncture; however, for the range of concentrations examined, this difference was not clinically important.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results suggest that for the range of concentrations examined, the MEV nick technique is a reasonable alternative to venous blood collection for serial measurement of BG concentrations in cats. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2002; 221:389–392)

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association