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Erysipelas Outbreak in Catanduanes

by 5m Editor
16 June 2011, at 10:39am

PHILIPPINES - At least 17 pigs have been killed and 172 more are sick in three villages in Pandan town in Catanduanes due to erysipelas.

A 'pig kill' in three barangays of Pandan, Catanduanes caused by an infectious disease recently stirred hog raisers and veterinary experts in the island province of Catanduanes into a near pandemonium, reports Phil Star. The outbreak was later blamed on poor sanitation.

Governor Joseph Cua received a report from Pandan town Mayor, Restituto de Quiroz, that at least 15 pigs died and 172 others got sick over a three-day period in the villages of Del Sur, Libod and Napo, in the coastal town located at the northern section of the province.

The governor said he promptly dispatched a five-man team from the Provincial Veterinary Office (PVO) headed by provincial veterinarian, Peter Aldin Azanza, to assist the Municipal Agriculture Office (MAO) in looking into the problem.

Following visual inspections on the site of the disease outbreak and necropsy performed on affected animals, Mr Azanza reported that the culprit was a swine pathogen called erysipelas. He said the virus developed at the water, soil, decaying organic matter, slime on the bodies of fish and on carcasses as well as in carrier pigs causing the spread of the disease.

The symptoms of infections, according to Azanza include the purple discoloration of the ears, snout and abdomen of the pigs, diamond-shaped skin lesions, high body temperature, poor appetite and restlessness.

Don't eat pig victims, warns vet

Mr Azanza said that the affected animals is hazardous to human health. "The affected animals are no longer fit for human consumption," he stressed.

The infected hogs were supposed to be injected with amoxicillin but De Quiroz said the lack of medicines in the municipality prevented them from doing so. Governor Cua then instructed the PVO to provide the medicines at the expense of the provincial government.

The visual inspection conducted by the team also found out that majority of the backyard hog raisers have not provided proper waste disposal facilities for animal manure while some homes do not even have toilets.

The situation, Mr Azanza said, left no choice for the hog raisers and household members but to dispose animal and human wastes in public canals and along the shorelines that result to pollution of the nearby swamp whose water circulates with the sea tides.

The PVO team recommended that a temporary quarantine be implemented in the three villages affected by the outbreak to prevent the spread of the disease. The Phil Star report adds that the team also recommended to the local government the strict implementation of the ordinance on the proper waste disposal to prevent serious health problems.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on erysipelas by clicking here.

5m Editor