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Survey of pleuritis and pulmonary lesions in pigs at abattoir with a focus on the extent of the condition and herd risk factors

A total of 4889 animals, ranging in age from 9 to 10months, from 48 batches of pigs belonging to an equal number of herds, were included in the study.

Friday 23 December 2011 (6 years 6 months 29 days ago)

Cranioventral pulmonary consolidation (enzootic pneumonia-like lesions) and chronic pleuritis (CP) are common findings in slaughtered pigs. Pleural lesions involving dorsocaudal lobes are suggestive of pleuropneumonia due to Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae.

In this report the results of an abattoir survey of pleuritis and pulmonary lesions in pigs is presented with a focus on herd risk factors. A total of 4889 animals, ranging in age from 9 to 10months, from 48 batches of pigs belonging to an equal number of herds, were included in the study. Bronchopneumonic lesions suggestive of enzootic pneumonia (EP-like lesions) were detected in 46.4% of the examined lungs. The EP-like lesion average value for all lungs was 1.03 (95% CI 0.98-1.08), ranging from 0.17 to 2.56 among the 48 batches; 47.5% of lungs showed chronic pleuritis.

Dorsocaudal pleuritis suggestive of recovered pleuropneumonia (SPES score ?2) was found in 25.1% of the lungs. The mean SPES (slaughterhouse pleuritis evaluation system) value of the overall 4889 lungs was 0.83 (95% CI 0.78-0.86). The mean SPES value of the batches ranged from 0.04 to 1.87. The mean Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae index of all studied batches was 0.61 (95% CI 0.51-0.71), ranging from 0 to 1.84. Blood samples were collected from each herd to evaluate antibody titres to Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, A. pleuropneumoniae, Aujeszky's disease virus, porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV), and swine influenza virus. Herd characteristics were recorded using a questionnaire given to the farmers. A multivariable analysis was conducted to identify risk factors for pleuritis and EP-like lesions. High dorsocaudal pleuritis was associated with A. pleuropneumoniae seroprevalence and history of A. pleuropneumoniae isolation from pneumonic lungs of dead animals. Vaccination of weaners at 3-5weeks of age against PRRS using a modified live vaccine was associated with a reduction in the percentage of cranioventral pulmonary consolidation (EP-like lesions).

Merialdi G, Dottori M, Bonilauri P, Luppi A, Gozio S, Pozzi P, Spaggiari B, Martelli P. Survey of pleuritis and pulmonary lesions in pigs at abattoir with a focus on the extent of the condition and herd risk factors. Vet J. 2011 Dec 17. [Epub ahead of print].

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