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Endocarditis affects swine of all ages, and is regularly diagnosed during routine meat inspection. The endocardial vegetations are diagnosed macroscopically, and further diagnostic methods are rarely utilised, even though identification of the causative agent could help the farmer prevent further economic losses. Furthermore, as for other lesions found at meat inspection, it is important to regularly confirm the macroscopic diagnosis. The diagnosis of endocarditis with embolic complications leads to condemnation of the carcase, and shows that the bacteria (mainly Erysipelothrix rhusiopathiae and Streptococcus suis) are present in the herd, and may cause other diseases, such as S suis meningitis (Luque and others 1998). Since both bacteria can infect human beings, the safety of abattoir workers and consumers is also of concern. When further diagnostics are required, the most common method is bacteriologic cultivation. Histology is an alternative method. However, there is no description of the diagnostic value of histology compared with bacteriologic cultivation in porcine endocarditis. Hence, the objective was to evaluate and compare the diagnostic performance of histology and bacteriologic culture for porcine endocarditis. The material was collected at 11 Danish slaughterhouses during routine meat inspection (Jensen and others 2010), and sampled in two groups: Group 1 (n=117) consisted of animal hearts macroscopically diagnosed with endocarditis, and Group 2 (n=90) consisted …
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