The diagnosis and treatment of a case of lead poisoning in a cynomolgus monkey (Macaca fascicularis) are described. The clinical signs were jaundice and amaurosis. Clinicopathological findings suggested cholestasis. A tentative diagnosis of lead poisoning was made when basophilic stippling of erythrocytes was observed in a peripheral blood smear. The diagnosis was confirmed by finding a lead concentration of 2280 micrograms/litre in a venous blood sample. Cage bars painted with red lead appeared to be the source of the poison. The lead was chelated by the intramuscular administration of 2,3 dimercapto-1-propanol (BAL) and calcium disodium edetate for seven days, followed by oral D-penicillamine for five weeks. The encephalopathy was treated with dexamethasone sodium phosphate. Recovery from the blindness was noted after 10 days and marked improvement of the general well being of the animal was observed after one month.
- British Veterinary Association. All rights reserved.
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