Atlas of pathology
Where: skin and subcutaneous tissue
The piglets in this farm show typical signs of greasy pig disease, also known as exudative epidermitis. This is a bacterial infection of the skin caused by Staphylococcus hyicus. This is a common disease; there are no vaccines and the current treatments are not particularly effective. The affected piglets are generally between the ages of 10 and 40 days old. In affected groups of piglets, there is often a range of lesions at different stages of development. In some piglets, there are only a few dark brown and black small exudative scabby lesions on the face. In other piglets, this can progress to scabby, waxy, black lesions and dirty, greasy, crusty marks all around their eyes and head. Most affected piglets are not worried by their face lesions and eat and run around normally. The disease is often more severe in larger piglets that may be moved between litters, with fighting amongst themselves and scratching their facial skin and allowing the bacterium to enter the skin.