Bovis ISSN 2398-2993

Bovine herpes mammillitis

Synonym(s): bovine herpse virus 2, BHV-2, ulcerative dermatitis

Contributor(s): Richard Kemp , Jo Oultram

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Introduction

  • Cause: bovine herpes virus 2 (BHV-2).
  • Signs: ulceration of the mammary skin and associated areas.
  • Diagnosis: clinical signs, virus isolation, serology.
  • Treatment: symptomatic, possibly topical anti-viral agents.
  • Prognosis: variable, very good to guarded depending on severity.

Pathogenesis

Etiology

Predisposing factors

General

  • Bovine herpes mammillitis tends to occur in autumn and early winter.  

Specific

  • A possible association with periparturient edema Edema has been reported.
  • Some outbreaks have been associated with the recent purchase of a cow.

Pathophysiology

  • BHV-2 primary infection is introduced through a skin lesion or via biting flies. Flies
  • A short viremia may occur.
  • A latent infection subsequently develops in skin & neurones.
  • The virus is thermosensitive and replicates at a temperature below body temperature - possibly why most cases are seen during cooler weather.

Timecourse

  • Incubation period is 4 - 10 days.
  • Ulcers usually resolve within 4 weeks.

Epidemiology

  • It has been hypothesised that infection may occur due to transmission by biting flies during the summer months, with recrudescence occurring at calving.
  • Latent infection is thought to occur. However the epidemiology of the infection is still uncertain.
  • Disease is usually sporadic although large outbreaks affecting several farms have occurred.

Diagnosis

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Treatment

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Prevention

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Outcomes

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMed Resource.
  • Martin W B, Hay D, Crawford L V, Le Bouvier G L & Crawford E M (1966) Characteristics of bovine mammillitis virus. Microbiology 45, pp 325-332 PubMed.
  • Martin W B & Scott F M M (1979) Latent infection of cattle with bovid herpesvirus 2. Archives of Virology 60, pp 51- 58 PubMed.
  • Kemp R, Holliman A & Nettleton P F (2008) Atypical bovine herpes mammillitis affecting cows and calves. Veterinary Record 163, pp 119-121 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Martin W B (1990) Bovine mammillitis virus. In Virus Infections of Ruminants. Eds: Dinter Z & Morein B. Amsterdam, Elsevier. pp 109- 116.
  • Gibbs E P J (2004) Bovine herpesvirus 2 infections. In: Infectious Diseases of Livestock. Eds: Coetzer J A W & Tustin R C. Oxford, Oxford University Press. pp 887- 894.
  • CABI (2018) Bovine herpesvirus 2 infection. [online] Last accessed 11th January 2018. Available at: www.cabi.org.


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