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Clinical manifestation of babesiosis of horses

Babesiosis is an obligate vector-borne disease because transmission of pathogens occurs through specific carriers – ixode ticks.

The disease causes significant damage to the horse breeding, reducing performance of horses for the long term, leads to death of infected animals. For babesiosis the percentage of pregnancy in mares reduces and abortions in mares occur.

Therefore, the aim of the study was to investigate changes in the clinical condition and hematological parameters in horses patients with babesiosis.

For the study was formed research (10 animals) and control (5 animals) groups of patients with babesiosis in horses. They were held in the private sector Polonsky district, Khmelnitsky region and were between the ages of 2 to 7 years.

For laboratory diagnosis of babesiosis the first drop of blood from the tip of the ear of a horse was taken to a glass slide and were done swabs. They were fixed by liquid Nikiforova (alcohol, ether) and stained with azure-eosin according to Romanovsky-Gimza. In erythrocytes blue babezies were shown.

After the clinical examination a laboratory study of the blood was carried out.

The number of erythrocytes in the blood was determined with test tube method in a chamber with a grid Goryaeva, contest of hemoglobin – with hemiglobincyanide method.

In the blood serum was determined the content of albumin, glucose, creatinine, urea, the activity of ASAT, alkaline phosphatase. This was done using a universal biochemical analyzer RAYTO 1904C of clinical diagnostic laboratory of the faculty of veterinary medicine, INEU and diagnostic kits. The obtained results were processed by statistical methods.

After analyzing the seasonal dynamics of infestation babasse it was noted that most often disease of horses recorded in may (29,3 %) in the period of mass attacks of ticks, more rarely in the first decade of June (of 8.5 %). The next wave of diseases of horses for babesiosis was registered in October (3.1 %) and in November (1.2 per cent).

So, among 1150 surveyed in the Polonsky district horses were registered 21.5 % of patients with babesiosis.

During the inspection it was found that in all animals the skin was dry, pale and hair dull. Patients horses showed fever for 3-4 days, tachycardia, tachypnea, loss of appetite, thirst, later developed apathy and anorexia. Mucous membranes were pale, and at 40% of animals acquired carichero color.

With the progression of the disease in horses was observed by frequent, painful urination. The urine was yellow to red, and on the 3-4th day of illness turned brown-red color.

The greatest number of Babesia in the peripheral blood was observed on the 2nd or 3rd day after the discovery. In the blood of infested animals spontaneously was reported a sharp decline in the number of red blood cells to 4.1±0.7 T/l (р<0,01).

Of the studied blood samples taken from sick horses, 80% had low hemoglobin content (75,9 ± 9,7 g / l (p <0.05)), of 25% of the horses it was critical (60.6 ± 8 5 g / l), indicating the development of anemia.

Signs of protein metabolism were reducing the amount of albumin to 29,9 ± 1,47% (at physiological fluctuations of 35-45%).

The concentration of glucose was reduced to 2,3 ± 0,08 mmol / l, which is 50% less compared to healthy animals (p <0.001), it shows the development of hypoglycemia and reduce the energy potential of cells.

Aspartate aminotransferase activity was increased against the control group and was 291,3 ± 10,5 U / L (p <0.05), indicating damage to hepatocytes.

During these periods increased elimination in blood alkaline phosphatase (216,0 ± 5,2 U / L), because of what its figure was significantly (p <0.05) higher compared with control animals, which means development of intrahepatic cholestasis in patients horses. This indicates pathology in extrahepatic bile ducts.

 In renal involvement in the disease process for babesiosis horses indicated pain in the lumbar region in 5 (50%) patients, the urine of horses was brownish-red, indicating increased permeability of glomerular capillary walls and development of hematuria. Intoxication, poor circulation flow for acute babesiosis in horses led to the reduction of leakage, and reabsorption excretory functions of the kidneys. Therefore infested animals compared with the control group, identified the high level of creatinine in serum – 390,5 ± 36,3 mmol / l (p <0.001), with fluctuations 250,2-665,2 mmol / l. Urea had statistically higher values ​​- 12,1 ± 2,9 mmol / L vs. control (p <0.05).

Thus, typical clinical signs for horses are babesiosis, wool dull, pale visible mucous membranes, loss of appetite, hyperthermia, thirst, further – apathy, anorexia, pain in the liver, icterus conjunctiva, tachycardia, appearance of brown-red urine.

Found increased activity of one of the information and diagnostic enzymes – AST, alkaline phosphatase activity increase and decrease of glucose. Kidney disease is accompanied with poor circulation with decrease of filtration, excretory and reabsorbic functions, which is shown by hiperkreatynemiya and hiperazotemiya.

Key words: horses, diagnosis, liver, kidneys, enzymes, creatinine, urea, hepatitis, babesiosis.

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