Homoeopathy for Bovine Mastitis

Dr Sahana Dhamotharan

OBJECTIVES:

  1. To describe about the mastitis in dairy cow
  2. To explain the scope and therapeutics in homoeopathy for this condition
  3. Briefing a case report

DEFINITION: Bovine mastitis is the inflammation of the mammmary gland and udder tissue due to microorganisms infection or any kind of trauma which is a major endemic disease of dairy cattle.

 It’s the most common cause of disease and death in dairy cows. Each year around 50% of cows suffer from mastitis and about 1 in 4 of this die or are culled.

CAUSE

  1. Bacterial infection – streptococci, staphylococci, E.coli, corynebacteri pyrogens
  2. Injury – mechanical, thermal, chemical

ROUTE OF TRANSMISSION
The route of transmission of infection can mostly occur by contact through the contaminated hands, milking machine or other materials, in housing or from bedding.

TYPES
Mainly Acute, subacute and chronic forms are recognised clinically

Acute form
It usually accompanies parturition where the onset is sudden and can also occur in drying off stage in less severe form. There will be swelling which can range from slight oedema to a hot painful enlargement. Acute inflammatory signs will be present such as redness of the udder, rise of temperature locally and generally.

Chronic form
Acute inflammatory signs are absent in this form although acute exacerbation can occur. Hard swelling of the udder due to fibrous induration in the region of milk cistern. Milk will contain small clots or pus.

CLINICAL SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS
 The most common symptoms and signs are as follows

In Under or Mammary Gland

  1. Swelling – mild to severe
  2. Rise of temperature
  3. Hardness
  4. Redness
  5. Pain and tenderness

In Milk

  1. Watery appearance with clots or pus
  2. Serous or bloody discharge
  3. Reduction in milk yield

Other signs and symptoms are

  • Fever- increase in body temperature
  • Lack of appetite
  • Sunken eyes
  • Signs of diarrhoea and dehydration
  • Reduced mobility
  • Dullness

SCOPE OF HOMOEOPATHY
Homoeopathy in veterinary science is becoming popular and many doctors and veterinarians across the world are using homoeopathy for animals with considerable success. There are many researches and studies have been conducted on animals to test the efficacy of homoeopathic treatment in various disease conditions. A study on ‘comparative efficacy of homoeopathic systems of medicine in the management of clinical mastitis of indian dairy cows’ was conducted by J.P. Varshney and R.Naresh state that the overall effectiveness of homoeopathic combination medicine in the treatment of acute non- fibrosed mastitis was 86.6% with a mean recovery period of 7.7 days.

THERAPEUTICS
As in humans even for the cows the totality have to be obtained and the individual remedy have to be administered accordingly. Here the symptoms are obtained by the objective symptoms, observation of the behaviour and also the animal’s reaction to the disease. And the medicines are administered through tongue, in drinking water or through injection rarely.

The most commonly indicated medicines are as follows:

  1. BELLADONNA
  • In acute form of mastitis
  • Swelling, redness, hardness and tenderness
  • Bounding pulse with rise of temperature
  • Mastitis after postpartum
  • Aggravated by touch, motion and pressure
  1. APIS MELLIFICA
  • Erysipelatous inflammation of the mammary gland
  • Swelling and hardness of the mammae threatening to ulcerate 
  • Parts are swollen, puffed up; becomes oedematous and of shiny, red rosy colour
  • Decreased thirst
  • Aggravated by heat, touch, pressure and relieved by cold application
  1. CONIUM MACULATUM
  • Glands especially mammary gland is affected with engorgement and stony induration
  • Ill effects of contusion and blows
  • Chronic form of mastitis
  • Inflammation of the mammary gland
  • Scirrhus of the mammary gland after contusion
  1. BRYONIA ALBA
  • Mammary gland swelling hard and indurated
  • In acute forms pain will be relieved by pressure on the udder where the animal lies down frequently 
  • Mammary gland hot, painful and hard
  • Stony hard mammae
  • Milk fever
  • Aggaravated by motion relieved by pressure and lying down
  1. ARNICA MONTANNA
  • Mastitis as a result of injury to the udder tissue
  • Bloody secretion
  • Aggaravated touch and motion. Relieved by lying down
  1. PHYTOLACCA
  • A useful remedy for both acute and chronic forms
  • Heavy, stony hard, swollen and tender mammae
  • Bluish red glands
  • Discharge of pus which is watery, foetid and ichorous
  • In acute form curdled milk and clots. In chronic form small clots may appear
  1. SILICEA
  • Chronic cases of corynebacteri pyrogens infection where multiple abscesses are formed
  • Bloody discharge from mammary gland aggravated by nursing
  • Hard lumps, fistula in mammae
  • Threatened abscesses of mammae
  • Suppurative processes, stubborn, fistulous openings
  • Aggravted by cold and dampness
  1. URTICA URENS
  • Acute forms of mastitis showing oedema which may be in the form of plaques frequently extending to the perineal area
  • Great swelling of mammae with serous discharge and followed by copious milk production
  • Dimnished secretion of milk after parturition

CASE REPORT
A farmer came and reported about his cow which has got hard swelling of the udder, serous discharge, dullness and it does not allow its calf to nurse. On observation the udder was stony hard with engorgement of veins, redness and tenderness. Based on this totality of symptoms conium 200 thrice a day for 3 days was given for administartion. Next day it allowed its calf to nurse, redness and tenderness was reduced. After 1 week the stony hardness was better. Two weeks later the farmer reported that the cow is doing well and no complaints are present.

REFERENCE

  1. MacLeod G. The treatment of cattle by homoeopathy. Random House; 2012 Jun 12.
  2. Bellavite P, Ortolani R, Conforti A. Immunology and homeopathy. 3. Experimental studies on animal models. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine. 2006;3(2):171-86.
  3. Clarke JH. A dictionary of pratical materia medica. homoeopathic publishing Company; 1902.
  4. Phatak SR. Materia Medica of Homoeopathic Medicines. B. Jain Publishers; 2002.
  5. Rv Z. Complete Repertory (CR). Computerversion MacRepertory Millennium. 2000.
  6. https://dairy.ahdb.org.uk/technical-information/animal-health-welfare/mastitis/
  7. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mastitis_in_dairy_cattle
  8. http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-2LKGZm7SLFY/VXgtmWM_KQI/AAAAAAAAJlo/ayQ5mlE85F4/s1600/mastitis%2Bin%2Bcpws.jpg

Dr Sahana Dhamotharan
PG SCHOLAR,Dept of Materia Medica
Govt Homoeopathic Medical college,Bengaluru

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