Clinical Efficacy of Aspirin as an Adjunct to Antibacterial Treatment of PRDC

There was a significant decrease in fever in pigs th at received aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid; ASA) and an antibiotic compared to the group that received only antibiotic but there were no synergistic effects of the two treatments on respiratory signs, according to researchers based in Barcelona, Spain.
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The efficacy of ASA as an adjunct to antibiotic treatment of pigs with fever during an outbreak of PRDC was investigated by Dr Carles Vilalta of the Autonomous University of Barcelona in Spain and co-authors there and at the universities of Zaragoza and Lleida and Laboratorios SYVA. Their paper has been published in the latest issue of Journal of Swine Health and Production.

PRDC is characterised clinically by dyspnoea, coughing, acute depression, anorexia, fever and nasal discharge, primarily affecting growing to finishing pigs, they explain. This complex disease is most often due to interaction of multiple factors. Both viral and bacterial organisms play a role, as well as the environment and various management practices employed by producers.

The most common viral pathogens associated with PRDC are porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome virus (PRRSV), swine influenza virus, pseudorabies virus and porcine respiratory coronavirus, the researchers continue. The prevalence of pseudorabies virus is extremely low in Spain due to a national eradication programme presently in effect. Thus, the relevance of this virus is decreasing quickly as an aetiologic agent of PRDC in Spain, according to Vilalta and co-authors. The most common bacterial pathogens associated with this complex include Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae, Actinobacillus pleuropneumoniae, Bordetella bronchiseptica, Pasteurella multocida, Haemophilus parasuis, Streptococcus suis, Arcanobacterium pyogenes, Salmonella enterica serovar Choleraesuis, and Actinobacillus suis.

Animals were divided into two groups. The experimental group received doxycycline hyclate and ASA in the drinking water for five consecutive days at doses of 10mg per kg and 100mg per kg of body weight, respectively. The control group received only doxycycline hyclate (10mg per kg). Clinical efficacy was investigated by comparing the synergistic or antagonistic effects of ASA administered with an antibiotic versus use of the antibiotic alone to reduce fever or clinical signs or both.

The researchers report that there was a significant decrease in fever in the group that received ASA and antibiotic versus the values observed in the group that received only antibiotic. No synergistic effect between ASA and doxycycline hyclate was observed to decrease respiratory signs.

Acetylsalicylic acid is efficacious, at least to reduce fever, as an adjunct to antibacterial treatment of PRDC, concluded Vilalta and co-authors.


Vilalta C, T. Alcalá, R. López-Jimenez, M. Nofrarías, S. López-Soria, S. Espín, T. Varela and L. Fraile. 2012. Clinical efficacy of acetylsalicylic acid as an adjunct to antibacterial treatment of porcine respiratory disease complex. J Swine Health Prod. 20(1):10–16.

Further Reading

- You can view the full report by clicking here.

Further Reading

- Find out more information on porcine respiratory disease complex (PRDC) by clicking here.

February 2012
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