Back to latest-news Managing mastitis for a faster recovery

Managing mastitis for a faster recovery

18 July 2022

With the mantra of ‘know the bug, know the drug’, Mastatest has gone a long way towards transforming mastitis treatment for farmers and vets alike in recent seasons.

If your clients want to go one step better, it’s time to factor in pain relief as well this season.

Understanding and using pain relief such as KetoMax 15% for mastitis to reduce pain and inflammation is much more widespread than it used to be, but there is also still a lot of opportunity to continue building awareness around the benefits of administering an NSAID.

AgriHealth has been actively encouraging farmers to adopt a multi-layered approach to clinical mastitis this season.

The first step is treating every clinical case with KetoMax, which has a nil milk withholding period.

The second step is taking a milk sample from every clinical case and running it through the rapid Mastatest process to identify both the type of bacteria causing the disease, and the antibiotic sensitivities against the bacteria.

“This combined approach is better for cow well-being, and for mastitis management too” says Dr. Steve Cranefield, AgriHealth Technical Manager.

Mastatest is simple and easy to use - all the farmers have to do is fill a Mastatest cartridge with a milk sample and place it into the Lapbox. Pathogens involved and MIC values for the antimicrobials tested are identified within 24 hours and immediately emailed to the vet and farmer.

This means farmers can use the right drug first time if antibiotic treatment is indicated. There’s no more guesswork involved, meaning fewer re-treatments, and saving time, money and unnecessary use of antibiotics.

“Treating with pain relief reduces pain and inflammation in the interim that gets the cow back on the road to recovery quicker” he says.

“We know mastitis is associated with swelling, heat, inflammation, fever, loss of appetite, depression, and lethargy. The faster that sick cows start feeling better, the sooner they are back with their herd-mates, eating properly, milking to their potential, cycling well and having a long, healthy lactation.” Research has shown that pain relief as part of mastitis treatment benefits in-calf rates, through earlier conception, and cow longevity, through significantly reduced culling.

“We know udder pain can persist after the mastitis is initially treated. Extending pain relief usage for mastitis with three days of KetoMax helps cows recover faster and reduce mastitis impact on productivity.”

Where Mastatest identifies coliform or gram-negative infections, farmers can use three days of KetoMax, with no antibiotics, and continue milking twice a day, unless the cow is sick.

“Treating mastitis with pain relief, taking a milk sample, waiting 24 hours for the result and then treating based on the result is the way of the future”, Cranefield says. It helps ensure antibiotics are only used when needed, keeping our industry socially sustainable in today’s global market.

AgriHealth is a New Zealand owned veterinary medicines company helping vets to help farmers reduce the impact of mastitis on their farming business.

For more details on how vets can help, including solutions and farmer resources, please contact your AgriHealth Area Sales Manager. 

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