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Photo of Pleurisy in pigs: associated risk factors and impact on health, welfare and performance

Steve Dunkley

Head of Knowledge Exchange (Interim)

AHDB Pork KE

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T: work 01423 797 303

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Pleurisy in pigs: associated risk factors and impact on health, welfare and performance

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Research partners: University of Cambridge, Veterinary Laboratories Agency, Bowes of Norfolk, BQP, Yorkwold Ltd.

Sponsors: AHDB Pork, RCVS Trust Senior Clinical Training Scholarship

Duration: 2008 – 2009 

Aims and objectives

  • To determine the relative importance of on-farm risk factors for pleurisy, thereby informing new preventative strategies
  • To quantify the impact of pleurisy on:
  • Production costs before and after processing
  • Objective measures of health and welfare during production
  • To assess the relative importance of the current known causal agents of pleurisy in the UK
  • To provide this information in a format suitable for knowledge transfer to producers, veterinarians, and processors. 

Findings to date

The work has provided clear messages on the management factors that can reduce or exacerbate pleurisy. The substantial cost of pleurisy and associated disease both to producers and processors has been highlighted and recommendations for optimized investigation and diagnosis of farm-specific causes were developed. 

This provides sufficient preliminary knowledge for producers to calculate the economic impact of disease on their own units, to plan investigations of their own infectious and non-infectious factors, and to implement protective management practices that are most suited to their specific circumstances. 

The key findings have been set out in Section 7 (page 61-63) of the final report. 

Further information

Final report

Press release