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Evaluation of Blood Parameters as an Early Assessment of Health Status in Nursery Pigs

13 June 2013

Certain blood indicators may be useful in monitoring health of nursery pigs, according to new research from Kansas State University.

Nursery pigs were categorised as healthy or unthrifty, and significant differences in certain blood gases and some ion concentrations were observed between health groups in an experiment by Brandi L. Buzzard of Kansas State University and co-authors there and at Colorado State University.

In their paper in Journal of Swine Health and Production, they report that differences between healthy and unthrifty pigs were not apparent upon necropsy, however.

Assessment of blood glucose and sodium, haematocrit and haemoglobin may be useful in early detection or study of nursery-pig wasting diseases, the researchers concluded. They added that blood parameters suggest that unthrifty nursery pigs may be experiencing anorexia and weakness.


Buzzard B.L., L.N. Edwards-Callaway, T.E. Engle, T.G. Rozell and S.S. Dritz. 2013. Evaluation of blood parameters as an early assessment of health status in nursery pigs. J Swine Health Prod. 2013;21(3):148–151.


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June 2013

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