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Implementation of an antimicrobial-use algorithm for treatment of diarrheic calves: Impact on antimicrobial treatment and mortality rates.

D. Renaud

Events

06-23-2020

Abstract:

230
Implementation of an antimicrobial-use algorithm for treatment of diarrheic calves: Impact on antimicrobial treatment and mortality rates.
D. Gomez1, L. Arroyo1, D. Renaud*2, J. S. Weese3. 1Department of Clinical Studies, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph Guelph, ON, Canada, 2Department of Population Medicine, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph Guelph, ON, Canada, 3Department of Pathobiology, Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph Guelph, ON, Canada.

Calf diarrhea is the major cause of disease and usage of antimicrobial agents in calves <30 d of age on dairy farms. Approaches are needed to reduce, refine and standardize the use of antimicrobial (AB) therapy in diarrheic calves. The objective of this study was to evaluate the impact of implementing an antimicrobial-use algorithm on AB treatment and mortality rates of diarrheic calves. The study consisted of 2 periods: (a) Data analyses of AB treatment and mortality rates of dairy calves from 10 farms (F1- F10) before the implementation of the algorithm (before period, BP; 1 year) and (b) data analyses of AB treatment and mortality rates after implementation of the algorithm (after period, AP; 1 year). The algorithm directed AB therapy based on the presence of fever (≥39.5�C) and hyporexia in calves suffering from diarrhea. Treatment records of 2049 and 2251 calves were available in the BP and AP. Overall, the incidence of diarrhea was similar between periods (BP: 77% (1,573/2,049) vs. AP: 75% (1,698/2,251); P = 0.316). Implementation of the algorithm resulted in a marked reduction in antimicrobial treatment rates. In the BP, 85% (1303/1573) of the diarrheic calves were treated with antimicrobials, while in the AP, 18% (310/1698) were treated (P < 0.001). Reduction of the antimicrobial treatment rates of diarrheic calves was observed in 7 farms in the AP (P < 0.01), but differences were not observed in 3 farms (P > 0.05). In general, there were no differences in the overall mortality (BP: 4% (75/2,049) vs. AP: 3% (72/2,251); P = 0.449) or the mortality attributable to diarrhea between periods (BP: 1% (22/1,573) vs. AP: 0.6% (12/1,592); P = 0.73). The use of user-friendly antimicrobial-use algorithms can reduce significantly the use of antimicrobials with no identifiable negative impact on calf health.

Keywords: calf diarrhea, antimicrobial use, mortality rates.

Biography: Dave Renaud is a veterinary epidemiologist and an assiatnt professor in the Department of Population Medicine of the University of Guelph. He received his DVM from the University of Guelph in 2014, and worked in private practice on a full or part time basis for 4 years. Dave obtained his PhD in epidemiology from Department of Population Medicien of the Ontario Veterinary College. His research focuses on the health and welfare of dairy calves.