TitlePotential risk indicators of retained placenta and other diseases in multiparous cows.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsQu Y, Fadden AN, Traber MG, Bobe G
JournalJ Dairy Sci
Date Published2014 Jul
KeywordsAnimals, Blood Chemical Analysis, Body Composition, Case-Control Studies, Cattle, Cattle Diseases, Female, Oregon, Parity, Peripartum Period, Placenta, Retained, Postpartum Period, Pregnancy, Risk Factors

Retained placenta (RP), defined as fetal membranes not being expelled within 24 h after calving, is a costly disease in multiparous dairy cows that has been linked to immune suppression, infections, elevated lipid mobilization, and depleted status of antioxidants including α-tocopherol, and that increases the risk of other diseases (OD) in early lactation. Early detection of cows at increased risk of developing RP, OD, or both in early lactation could improve treatment success and result in improved milk production and reproductive performance. To identify risk indicators of RP, OD, or both, we used a nested case-control design and compared multiparous dairy cows that developed RP (n=32) with cows that remained healthy (H; n=32) or cows that developed OD (n=32) in early lactation. We compared peripartal body condition score (BCS) as well as serum concentrations of α-tocopherol, metabolites [β-hydroxybutyrate (BHBA), cholesterol, glucose, nonesterified fatty acids (NEFA), and urea N], haptoglobin, and macrominerals (i.e., calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus) on d -21, -14, -7, -3, -1, 0, 1, 3, 7, 14, 21, 28, 35, 42, and 49 postpartum. In addition, average serum concentrations were calculated for each cow for the last 3 wk prepartum, for 3 and 2 wk prepartum combined, for the last week prepartum, and for the morning after calving and compared between groups. The RP cows had lower BCS than the H or OD cows until 2 wk postpartum. During the prepartal periods, RP and OD cows had lower α-tocopherol concentrations (corrected or not for cholesterol concentration) and higher NEFA and BHBA concentrations than H cows. Thus, lower prepartal BCS could be an early predictor for RP risk, and lower α-tocopherol concentrations and higher NEFA and BHBA concentrations could be early predictors for disease.

Alternate JournalJ. Dairy Sci.
PubMed ID24792789