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Large Animals

Large Animals

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Published by Morad Imad

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Published by: Morad Imad on Oct 19, 2013
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10/19/2013

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Large Animals
Spastic paresis
is seen in many breeds of cattle and has been referred to as
 “contraction of the Achilles tendon,” “straight hock,” and “Elso heel.” (
See also
 
LAMENESS INCATTLE
, 
 .) It can be divided into 2 syndromes, one thataffects calves and one that affects adults. In calves, the condition appears to be familialand can be seen in many breeds, with signs beginning between 1 wk and 1 yr of age. It ischaracterized by extension of the stifle and tarsus and by spastic contracture of themuscles of one or both pelvic limbs. Spasticity primarily affects the gastrocnemius andsuperficial flexor muscles; in some cases, other muscles of the pelvic limb are involved.The leg is usually held in extension behind the calf and does not touch the ground duringwalking. The disease is progressive but usually responds to neurectomy of the tibialnerve. The etiology is unknown. No lesions are seen in peripheral nerves, and thecondition is thought to involve excessive activity of the neuromuscular spindle reflex arc.Adult cattle are affected at 3-7 yr of age. Extensor muscles of the back and pelvic limbsare affected, causing lumbar lordosis and caudal extension of the limbs. This condition isalso thought to be familial and is usually progressive. Mephenesin (30-40 mg/kg, PO, for2-3 days) may produce variable control of signs. Quadriceps muscle hypoplasia as acause of congenital lameness has been described in Holstein calves. Reduced numbers of spinal cord motor neurons suggest that there is failure to innervate the muscle on theaffected side.
Hyperkalemic periodic paralysis
is seen in Quarter Horses 2-3 yr old and is due to aninherited mutation of the sodium channel. It causes episodes of muscle tremor andsometimes recumbency, both of which may be precipitated by exercise. Hyperkalemia isusually present during an attack, and electromyography can also be helpful for diagnosis.Acetazolamide (0.5-2.2 mg/kg, PO,
BID
) and hydrochlorthiazide (0.5 mg/kg, PO,
BID
) maylessen the frequency and severity of attacks.
Myotonia congenita
is an inherited/familial disorder in goats and Shropshire lambs and isoccasionally seen in horses. It causes muscle rigidity; marked dimpling on percussion of the muscle belly; and a stiff, stilted gait. Electromyography is a useful aid to diagnosis.This disease results from a mutation in a chloride channel.
Muscular dystrophy
is an inherited disease in Merino sheep. It results in a slowlyprogressive stiffness that affects the limbs and neck from 3-4 wk of age onwards. Clinicallyaffected sheep have high resting and postexercise concentrations of serum CK and lacticdehydrogenase.
Porcine stress syndrome or malignant hyperthermia
 (

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