The American Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP) has published on its website comprehensive guidelines for the identification, control and prevention of Glanders, a contagious disease largely eradicated from the developed world but which has resurfaced recently with reported cases from countries in Asia, Africa, the Middle East and South America.
Although long eradicated in North America, Australia and Europe, recent outbreaks in countries in which Glanders was previously eradicated indicate that the disease is no longer as geographically restricted in terms of its global distribution. This re-emergence, according to guidelines co-author Abby Sage, VMD, DACVIM, underscores the importance of effective import control measures.
“Although Glanders was officially eradicated in the United States in 1934, it continues to be present in many countries throughout the world,” said Dr. Sage, Richmond staff veterinarian for the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. “We must remain vigilant through the USDA's strict testing of horses at points of entry into the U.S. to prevent re-introduction of this disease.”
Prompt identification, euthanasia and appropriate disposal of all positive cases of the disease is critical to effective prevention and control of Glanders. Although antibiotic treatment of affected animals is employed in some areas of the world where Glanders is endemic, it is not the accepted option for most countries when dealing with an outbreak.
The Glanders Guidelines, available as a PDF file, were co-authored for the AAEP's Infectious Disease Committee by Drs. Sage and Peter Timoney, the Frederick Van Lennep Chair in Equine Veterinary Science at the University of Kentucky's Gluck Equine Research Center.
Download the Glanders Guidelines here.
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