Drunken lamb syndrome (DLS) has recently been described as lamb D-lactic acidosis syndrome (LDLAS). In 2012, 18 lambs aged between 7 days and 28 days with LDLAS were identified. Biochemically, each lamb had a metabolic acidosis characterised by D-lactic acidosis and exhibited clinical signs including: not hyperthermic, no evidence of dehydration, demonstrating an ataxic gait tending to recumbency (DLS) and possibly somnolence. These lambs received 50 mmol of sodium bicarbonate as an 8.4 per cent solution given orally, together with parenteral long-acting amoxicillin. All 18 cases made a full clinical recovery. This study demonstrates a novel effective treatment for a disease that is usually fatal, and also demonstrates a strong correlation between venous plasma bicarbonate concentrations and venous plasma D-lactate concentrations (R2=0.49).
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