Ultrasonographic imaging of abomasal milk clotting and abomasal diameter in healthy and diarrheic calves
In case of diarrhea calves are treated with oral rehydration solutions (ORS), which are known to increase abomasal pH and inhibit milk clotting in vitro. Nevertheless, recent studies have shown that ORS with HCO3 ‐ ≤ 62 mmol/L do not interfere with abomasal milk clotting in healthy calves. However, in diarrheic calves, feeding ORS and milk simultaneously may disturb abomasal curd formation and exacerbate diarrhea due to faster abomasal passage of ingesta. Therefore, the aim of the present study was to ultrasonographically examine abomasal milk clotting and diameter after feeding milk and milk replacer (MR) with and without ORS to healthy and diarrheic calves. Abomasal curd formation and diameter in healthy and diarrheic calves were ultrasonographically imaged before and after feeding milk, MR and ORS prepared in milk or MR. Feeding mixtures of milk or MR with ORS did not cause any remarkable differences in the ultrasonographic images of abomasal content. Moreover, abomasal milk clotting was not disturbed due to diarrhea. Statistically significant differences of abomasal diameter after feeding between healthy and diarrheic calves indicated that abomasal emptying is delayed in diarrheic calves. Hence, further studies are needed to determine reasons for decelerated abomasal passage in calves suffering from diarrhea.
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