Clinicopathological studies on facial eczema outbreak in sheep in Southwest Turkey

Ozmen O., Sahinduran S., Haligur M. , Albay M. K.

TROPICAL ANIMAL HEALTH AND PRODUCTION, cilt.40, ss.545-551, 2008 (SCI İndekslerine Giren Dergi) identifier identifier identifier

  • Cilt numarası: 40 Konu: 7
  • Basım Tarihi: 2008
  • Doi Numarası: 10.1007/s11250-008-9132-7
  • Sayfa Sayıları: ss.545-551


After very hot summer, 22 sheep from 5 different flocks consisting of approximately 150-200 animals each were diagnosed with facial eczema in September 2005, in southwest Turkey. Photophobia, corneal opacity, severe ulcers of the facial skin, especially localized around the eyes and mouth, and 3% mortality were the most prominent clinical symptoms. GGT levels of the animals were very high and varying between 261-328 U/l. While the activities of ALT and total bilirubin were elevated and AST was normal in affected sheep. Total bilirubin level was higher than normal. Seven of the 22 sheep were euthanatized and necropsy was performed on all of these animals. Severe icterus, hepatomegaly, enlarged gallbladder, congestion of mesenteric vessels were the common necropsy findings. Histopathological changes of the liver included necrosis of the hepatocytes, cholangiohepatitis characterized by mononuclear inflammatory cell infiltrate in the portal area and mild to severe fibrosis around bile ducts. A diagnosis of sporidesmin toxicosis was made based on the histopathology of the livers, the elevation in liver enzymes, and the development of cutaneous lesions consistent with photosensitization and high spore counts in the ruminal contents. Surviving sheep were treated with procaine penicillin + dihidrostreptomycin sulfate, multivitamin complexes and flunixin meglumine. Additionally, zinc sulphate was also given at a dose of 6 gr per 100 lt drinking water for 28 days. All treated sheep recovered. Pasture spore counts were between 96,300- 267,500 spores/g grass.