Udder and teat disorders

Chapter 11 Udder and teat disorders

Congenital conditions


Summer mastitis

Acute mastitis

Peracute and acute mastitis are most commonly seen in the first few weeks after calving and are often the result of periparturient immune suppression. Disease may result from recrudescence of dormant dry period infections, or from new intramammary infections during lactation. Cases can occur throughout lactation at a lower frequency. In most cases peracute mastitis with toxemia results from coliform infections. Similarly, in acute mastitis, environmental organisms such as coliforms (e.g., Escherichia coli) or Streptococcus uberis are frequently involved. Immune suppression occasionally leads to acute disease from “contagious” mastitis organisms such as staphylococci, which are carried on the skin or in the udder of affected cows and transmitted to other cows during milking.

Clinical features

the most prominent sign of acute mastitis is an enlarged, hard, hot and painful quarter, which may be apparent before any changes are visible in the milk. In some cases, a brown serous discharge may be seen on the surface of the affected quarter and teat, as in the lactating Friesian cow in 11.4. A section of an affected udder (11.5), shows deep red inflammation of the teat cistern and teat canal mucosa. There is prominent subcutaneous edema and the skin at the tip of the teat is congested. Changes of this nature can lead to gangrene. The yellow foci (A) in the udder parenchyma are pockets of pus. In 11.6 the teat of the affected quarter is swollen with areas of hemorrhage. There is an obvious area of gangrene affecting the udder skin, which is dry, cracked, and cold. This cow was severely ill with an eventually fatal toxemia, although in less extensive cases the necrotic portion of the udder will slough and recovery is still possible. Such cases should not be confused with udder bruising (11.7).

Advanced gangrene (11.8) leads to cold, damp teat skin. Although mastitis was limited to the left forequarter (A), the entire udder was blue, edematous, and cold to the touch. Adjacent to the affected teat is a skin slough and red exudate. The secretion from the udder was a deep port-wine color and was mixed with gas. The cow had been normal when milked 12 hours previously, indicating the peracute onset of disease. In cases of nonfatal, gangrenous mastitis the overlying skin (11.9), or even the entire affected quarter, sloughs slowly in 1–2 months.

Chronic mastitis

Jul 8, 2016 | Posted by in SUGERY, ORTHOPEDICS & ANESTHESIA | Comments Off on Udder and teat disorders
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