Swine Vesicular Disease in Portugal

PORTUGAL - This is a report via OIE on the recent Swine Vesicular Disease outbreak in the Beira Litoral region of Portugal
calendar icon 27 December 2003
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(Date of previous outbreak of swine vesicular disease in Portugal reported to the OIE: September 1995).

Emergency report

Translation of information received on 23 December 2003 from Dr Carlos Agrela Pinheiro, Director General of Veterinary Services, Ministry of Agriculture, Rural Development and Fisheries, Lisbon:

Date of the report: 23 December 2003.

Nature of diagnosis: clinical, post-mortem and laboratory.

Date of initial detection of animal health incident: 17 December 2003.

Date of confirmation of diagnosis: 22 December 2003.


Location No. of outbreaks
Chãs locality, Regueira de Pontes parish, Leiria district, Beira Litoral region 1 farm

Total number of animals in the outbreak:

species susceptible cases deaths destroyed slaughtered
sui 1,754* 12 0 1,754* 0

* 832 piglets, 773 fattening pigs, 147 sows and 2 boars.


A. Laboratories where diagnosis was made:

- National Veterinary Research Laboratory (LNIV(1)).

- Pirbright Laboratory, United Kingdom (OIE Reference Laboratory for swine vesicular disease).

B. Diagnostic tests used:

- ELISA(2) (on 22 December): negative results.

- RT-PCR(3) (on 22 December): positive results.

- Virus isolation (on 23 December): positive results.


A. Source of agent / origin of infection: unknown. Investigations under way.

B. Mode of spread: direct/indirect contact.

C. Other epidemiological details: no pigs left this holding during the 30-day period prior to detection of clinical signs.

Control measures: control measures laid down in Directive 92/119/EEC of the Council of the European Communities, “introducing general Community measures for the control of certain animal diseases and specific measures relating to swine vesicular disease“, are applied.

- The holding was placed under restriction on 17 December 2003.

- Stamping out began on 19 December.

- A 3-km-radius protection zone and a 10-km surveillance zone were set up.

- There is a complete standstill of pigs in all pig holdings located within the protection and surveillance zones (see table below).

Number of pig farms Number of pigs
3-km-radius protection zone 144 62,874
10-km surveillance zone 202 64,108
Total 346 126,982

- Cleaning and disinfection of vehicles transporting pigs stepped up throughout the whole country.

- Any consignment of pigs will be serologically tested for swine vesicular disease before dispatch from Portugal (there is very limited trade in live pigs from Portugal).

(1) LNIV: Laboratório Nacional de Investigação Veterinária

(2) ELISA: enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay

(3) RT-PCR: reverse transcriptase - polymerase chain reaction

Further Informaton

Information on Swine Vesicular Disease

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