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  • Author or Editor: Rebecca A. Funk x
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Objective—To determine whether it is safe to vaccinate pregnant or postpartum mares with a commercial modified-live virus vaccine against equine viral arteritis (EVA).

Design—Randomized controlled study.

Animals—73 mares and their foals.

Procedures—Mares were vaccinated during mid gestation, during late gestation, or 2 or 3 days after parturition with a commercial modified-live virus vaccine or were not vaccinated. Foaling outcomes were recorded, and serum, blood, milk, and nasopharyngeal samples were obtained.

Results—All mares vaccinated during mid gestation foaled without any problems; 21 of 22 mares in this group had antibody titers against EAV at the time of foaling. Of the 19 mares vaccinated during late gestation, 3 aborted; antibody titers against EAV were detected in 13 of 15 mares from which serum was obtained at the time of foaling. All postparturient vaccinates were seronegative at foaling; all of them seroconverted after vaccination. No adverse effects were detected in any of their foals.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—When faced with a substantial risk of natural exposure to EAV, it would appear to be safe to vaccinate healthy pregnant mares up to 3 months before foaling and during the immediate postpartum period. Vaccinating mares during the last 2 months of gestation was associated with a risk of abortion; this risk must be weighed against the much greater risk of widespread abortions in unprotected populations of pregnant mares naturally infected with EAV.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Objective—To evaluate diagnostic tests used for detection of bovine viral diarrhea virus (BVDV) and determine the prevalence of BVDV subtypes 1a, 1b, and 2a in persistently infected (PI) cattle entering a feedlot.

Design—Prospective study.

Animals—21,743 calves.

Procedures—Samples were obtained from calves initially testing positive via antigen capture ELISA (ACE) performed on fresh skin (ear notch) specimens, and ACE was repeated. Additionally, immunohistochemistry (IHC) was performed on skin specimens fixed in neutral-buffered 10% formalin, and reverse transcriptase PCR (RT-PCR) assay and virus isolation were performed on serum samples. Virus was subtyped via sequencing of the 5′ untranslated region of the viral genome.

Results—Initial ACE results were positive for BVDV in 88 calves. After subsequent testing, results of ACE, IHC, RT-PCR assay, and viral isolation were positive in 86 of 88 calves; results of all subsequent tests were negative in 2 calves. Those 2 calves had false-positive test results. On the basis of IHC results, 86 of 21,743 calves were PI with BVDV, resulting in a prevalence of 0.4%. Distribution of BVDV subtypes was BVDV1b (77.9%), BVDV1a (11.6%), and BVDV2a (10.5%).

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Rapid tests such as ACE permit identification and segregation of PI cattle pending results of further tests, thus reducing their contact with the rest of the feedlot population. Although vaccines with BVDV1a and 2a components are given to cattle entering feedlots, these vaccines may not provide adequate protection against BVDV1b.

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in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association


Case Description—13 equids (10 horses, 2 donkeys, and 1 pony) were examined for signs of colic (n = 7), weight loss (6), anorexia (3), and diarrhea (2). Ten equids were evaluated in the fall (September to November). Seven equids had a history of persimmon ingestion.

Clinical Findings—A diagnosis of phytobezoar caused by persimmon ingestion was made for all equids. Eight equids had gastric persimmon phytobezoars; 5 had enteric persimmon phytobezoars. Gastroscopy or gastroduodenoscopy revealed evidence of persimmon ingestion in 8 of 10 equids in which these procedures were performed.

Treatment and Outcome—2 of 13 equids were euthanatized prior to treatment. Supportive care was instituted in 11 of 13 equids, including IV administration of fluids (n = 8) and treatment with antimicrobials (5), NSAIDs (5), and gastric acid suppressants (4). Persimmon phytobezoar–specific treatments included dietary modification to a pelleted feed (n = 8); oral or nasogastric administration of cola or diet cola (4), cellulase (2), or mineral oil (2); surgery (4); and intrapersimmon phytobezoar injections with acetylcysteine (1). Medical treatment in 5 of 7 equids resulted in resolution of gastric persimmon phytobezoars. Seven of 8 equids with gastric persimmon phytobezoars and 1 of 5 equids with enteric persimmon phytobezoars survived > 1 year after hospital discharge.

Clinical Relevance—Historical knowledge of persimmon ingestion in equids with gastrointestinal disease warrants gastroduodenoscopy for evaluation of the presence of persimmon phytobezoars. In equids with gastric persimmon phytobezoars, medical management (including administration of cola or diet cola and dietary modification to a pelleted feed) may allow for persimmon phytobezoar dissolution.

Full access
in Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association