Article Text

Bacterial pneumonia associated with corticosteroid therapy in three horses
  1. T. S. Mair, BVSc, PhD, MRCVS1
  1. 1 Bell Equine Veterinary Clinic, Mereworth, Maidstone, Kent ME18 5GS


Three horses developed severe pulmonary infections while being treated with systemic corticosteroids for other diseases. Two of them had an immune-mediated skin disease, compatible with a diagnosis of pemphigus foliaceus, and one had severe chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Case 1 developed diffuse pneumonia from which Streptococcus zooepidemicus and Bacteroides melaninogenicus were isolated, and it responded to antibiotic therapy. Case 2 developed septicaemia, pulmonary thrombosis and pneumonia associated with Escherichia coli, and died during a peracute illness with signs of disseminated intravascular coagulation. Case 3 developed focal pneumonia from which S zooepidemicus was isolated. This horse was destroyed at the owner's request and no treatment was attempted.

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