When it comes to achieving higher clinical and bacteriological cure rates, cutting corners isn’t an option
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Clear up mastitis and common misconceptions

February 12, 2014
POSTED BY: Bradley Mills | DVM | Senior Veterinarian | Dairy Technical Services | Zoetis

If you’re looking for a long-term solution to an age-old problem, there’s no such thing as a quick fix. When it comes to achieving higher clinical and bacteriological cure rates, cutting corners isn’t an option. To avoid re-treating again and again, treatment decisions must be based on the causative pathogen, the severity of infection and the individual cow’s health history. 

The negative side of mastitis
Don’t underestimate the prevalence of Gram-negative mastitis and the need to treat it properly. Treating mastitis early and aggressively with extended therapy helps ensure the highest clinical and bacteriological cure rates. Achieving a complete cure (both clinical and bacteriological) the first time reduces the chance of relapse, or chronically infected cows, and makes a difference to overall dairy wellness and herd health.

 Two recent studies show a successful treatment of non-severe Escherichia coli mastitis with a five-day therapy with SPECTRAMAST® LC (ceftiofur hydrochloride) Sterile Suspension:

  • SPECTRAMAST LC shows an 89% bacteriological cure rate, compared with 53% for untreated control cows.1
  • SPECTRAMAST LC shows a 79% bacteriological cure rate, compared with a 50% cure rate with a one-day treatment of ToDAY®.2

Flexible label for treatment protocols
Look for products that offer flexibility to treat for two to eight days. Not every case of mastitis should be treated the same. Set up flexible treatment options so you can assess the situation and apply the proper treatment plan. Even if milk returns to normal and cows appear to be cured, complete the full course of treatment prescribed by your veterinarian. A clinical cure is not the same as a bacteriological, or complete cure, and extended therapy often is necessary to achieve a complete bacteriological cure and helps reduce the chance of relapse.

Match the drug to the bug
Treatment protocols must be fueled with good data. Work with your veterinarian to establish a routine and ongoing culturing program to determine the common mastitis-causing pathogens on your dairy operation. Using your records, have your veterinarian recommend an intramammary tube labeled for treatment of the identified pathogens. If culture data isn’t available, treat with a broad-spectrum tube that’s labeled for modern mastitis bugs, including Gram-negative and Gram-positive pathogens.

IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION: People with known hypersensitivity to penicillin or cephalosporins should avoid exposure to SPECTRAMAST LC. Product requires a 72-hour milk discard period and a 2 day pre-slaughter withdrawal period following the last treatment. Use of this product in a manner other than indicated on the label, or failure to adhere to proper milk discard period, will result in violative residues. See full Prescribing Information, here.

 1 Schukken YH, Bennett GJ, Zurakowski MJ, et al. Randomized clinical trial to evaluate the efficacy of a 5-day ceftiofur hydrochloride intramammary treatment on nonsevere Gram-negative clinical mastitis. J Dairy Sci 2011;94(12):6203-6215.

2 Schukken YH, Zurakowski MJ, Rauch BJ, Gross B, Tikofsky LL, Welcome FL. Noninferiority trial comparing a first-generation cephalosporin with a third-generation cephalosporin in the treatment of nonsevere clinical mastitis in dairy cows. J Dairy Sci 2013;96(10):6763-6774.

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