Ano 2005 - Volume 25, Número 2

Distrofia muscular nutricional em ovinos na Paraíba, p.120-124

Amorim S.L., Oliveira A.C.P., Riet-Correa F., Simões S.V.D., Medeiros R.M.T. & Clementino I.J. 2005. [Nutritional muscular dystrophy in sheep in Paraíba.] Distrofia muscular nutricional em ovinos na Paraíba. Pesquisa Veterinária Brasileira 25(2):120-124. Centro de Saúde e Tecnologia Rural, UFCG, Campus de Patos, 58700-000 Patos, PB Brazil. E-mail:

An outbreak of nutritional muscular dystrophy is reported in the semiarid region of northeastern Brazil affecting 3-4 months old Dorper sheep. The animals, weighing 30-40 kg, were fed ad libitum with milk, concentrated ration, Tifton hay, and a mineral mixture. Six out of 70 lambs were affected and died in the first 48 hours after the onset of the outbreak. Clinical signs were fever of 40-41ºC, incoordination followed by paralysis and recumbence, depression, prostration with decreased pupillary and corneal reflexes, decreased tonus of the tongue and maxilla, salivation, submaxillar edema, and increased cardiac and respiratory rates. Death occurred after a clinical manifestation period of 6-12 hours. At necropsy of three animals, skeletal muscles were pale, the liver was yellowish and enlarged, the parotid, submaxillary, retropharyngeal, prescapular and mediastinal lymph nodes were enlarged with red surface, and red areas were observed on the lung surface. On histology, segmental muscular necrosis was observed in all skeletal muscles examined. The liver had centrilobular fatty degeneration, and congestion was observed in the lung and lymph nodes. From 48-96 hours after the begin of the outbreak, another 3 animals were affected. They were treated with Vitamin A, E and D complex; two of them died and one survived. On the same farm, a flock of 20 Santa Inês sheep of the same age as the affected animals, fed with the same food, but no milk, and another 900 sheep of different ages were not affected. The over nutrition of sheep with fast growing rates, and the stress caused by two days of water restriction to improve milk consumption had been predisposing factors for the occurrence of the disease. It is also possible that some of the minerals supplemented interfered with selenium availability.
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