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J Dairy Sci. 2011 Sep;94(9):4441-56. doi: 10.3168/jds.2010-4046.

The selective treatment of clinical mastitis based on on-farm culture results: I. Effects on antibiotic use, milk withholding time, and short-term clinical and bacteriological outcomes.

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  • 1Department of Veterinary Population Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Minnesota, Saint Paul, Minnesota 55108, USA. alfonso.lago@gmail.com

Abstract

The objective of this multi-state, multi-herd clinical trial was to evaluate the efficacy of using an on-farm culture system to guide strategic treatment decisions in cows with clinical mastitis. The study was conducted in 8 commercial dairy farms ranging in size from 144 to 1,795 cows from Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Ontario, Canada. A total of 422 cows affected with mild or moderate clinical mastitis in 449 quarters were randomly assigned to either (1) a positive-control treatment program or (2) an on-farm, culture-based treatment program. Quarter cases assigned to the positive-control group received immediate on-label intramammary treatment with cephapirin sodium. Quarters assigned to the culture-based treatment program were cultured on-farm and treated with cephapirin sodium after 18 to 24h of incubation if they had gram-positive growth or a mixed infection. Quarters with gram-negative or no growth did not receive intramammary therapy. The proportion of quarter cases assigned to positive-control and culture-based treatments that received intramammary antibiotic therapy because of study assignment was 100 and 44%, respectively; the proportion of cases that received secondary antibiotic therapy was 36 and 19%, respectively; and the proportion of cases that received intramammary antibiotic therapy because of study assignment or secondary therapy was 100 and 51%, respectively. A tendency existed for a decrease in the number of days in which milk was discarded from cows assigned to the culture-based treatment program versus cows assigned to the positive-control group (5.9 vs. 5.2 d). No statistically significant differences existed between cases assigned to the positive-control and cases assigned to the culture-based treatment program in days to clinical cure (2.7 vs. 3.2 d), bacteriological cure risk within 21 d of enrollment (71 vs. 60%), new intramammary infection risk within 21 d of enrollment (50 vs. 50%), and treatment failure risk (presence of infection, secondary treatment, clinical mastitis recurrence, or removal from herd within 21 d after enrollment; 81 vs. 78%). In summary, the use of an on-farm culture system to guide the strategic treatment of clinical mastitis reduced intramammary antibiotic use by half and tended to decrease milk withholding time by 1 d, without significant differences in days to clinical cure, bacteriological cure risk, new intramammary infection risk, and treatment failure risk within 21 d after the clinical mastitis event.

Copyright © 2011 American Dairy Science Association. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID:
21854917
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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