ThePigSite Quick Disease Guide
Ileitis (Lawsonia intracellularis)
All are uncommon in the mature female but outbreaks of one of the forms, bloody gut or porcine haemorrhagic enteropathy (PHE), are occasionally seen in maiden and pregnant gilts.
The organism is impossible to keep out of farms probably because it also infects other species. Infected faeces are the major vehicle for spread around the farm.
SymptomsWeaners & Growers
Clinical signs of PIA, NE, RI are different from PHE.
- The pig appears clinically normal.
- Initially eats well.
- Chronic watery, sloppy diarrhoea.
- Gradual wasting.
- Loss of condition.
- In some cases a pot bellied bloated appearance.
- Pigs with the chronic form of the PIA recover over a period of four to six weeks, however there can be considerable losses in feed efficiency and daily gain of up to 0.3 and 80g/day respectively. As a consequence there can be marked variations in sizes of pigs.
- NI or RI follow from it with similar signs.
- Bloody scour.
- The pig may die suddenly.
- Appears very pale and passes black bloody faeces.
- Gilts with PHE have pale skins.
- Appear weak.
- Bloody or black tarry diarrhoea.
- May suddenly die.
Causes / Contributing factorsThese are not fully understood.
- The use of continually populated pens.
- Lack of all-in, all-out production.
- Naive animals.
- Change of environment.
- Changes in feed.
- Carry over of infection between batches appears to be a main means of spread.
- Associated with continual population of finishing pens.