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Ulcerative lymphangitis due to Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis in Bulgarian Holstein dairy cows
  1. Daniel Steerforth1 and
  2. Plamen Marutsov2
  1. 1Royal Veterinary College, Farm Animal Health and Production, London, UK
  2. 2Department of Veterinary Microbiology, Infectious and Parasitic Diseases, Trakijski Universitet Stara Zagora, Stara Zagora, Bulgaria
  1. Correspondence to Dr Daniel Steerforth; dsteerforth{at}, sforthdaniel{at}


Morbidity due to Corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis infection occurred in a 320 Holstein dairy herd in south-eastern Bulgaria during 2014. All established cases (n=43) were of multiple abscess formation and cellulitis predominantly localised on the hindlegs. The pyogranulomatous and ulcerative lesions in all cases were associated with mastitis. The disease was treated with parenteral antibiotics and local antiseptics, without any satisfactory outcome, and most of the affected animals were culled. Presumptive laboratory diagnosis of C pseudotuberculosis was made in November 2014, when 43 cases (herd prevalence 23.9 per cent) were recorded on the farm. The culling rate reached 95.3 per cent. All reported cases were in first calving cows (n=31; case prevalence 72.1 per cent), and cows between second and fifth lactation (n=12; case prevalence 27.9 per cent). Younger cattle appeared to be less susceptible to the infection. In first calving cows, all cases with lesions and mastitis occurred shortly after calving.

  • caseous lymphangitis
  • corynebacterium pseudotuberculosis
  • holstein dairy cattle
  • zoonoses
  • diagnostics
  • dermatopathology
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  • Contributors Both authors have contributed to the conception and conceptual design for publication of this case report. PM has equal and substantial contribution to the acquisition of the clinical data, and the analysis and interpretation of the clinical and laboratory data results. As a first author DVS has drafted the manuscript, and all relevant details in revising the manuscript critically for intellectual content has been communicated and shared between the authors.

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

  • Data sharing statement No additional data are available.

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