Dr Muhammad Haris
It is estimated that five million dairy farmers and meat sellers are suffering from the economic fallout of the Lumpy Skin Disease (LSD) outbreak. Lumpy skin disease or LSD, reportedly emerged first time in Pakistan’s Sindh province. According to the Sindh Livestock Department at the end of April 2022, approximately 36,000 cattle had been infected with LSD. The mortality rate is low and only 300 cows were expired.
What is Lumpy Skin Disease?
The LSD is caused by the Capripoxvirus, is an emerging threat to livestock worldwide. It is genetically related to the goatpox and sheeppox virus family.
LSD is primarily transmitted in cattle and water buffalo by blood-feeding insects. Just like dengue or malaria, the spread of lumpy disease occurs through the bite of mosquitoes, flies or ticks. These insects bite an infected animal and the virus gets into their bodies. Next time, the same insect bites a healthy animal, it ends up transmitting the virus to a healthy animal resulting in the spread of the disease.
Its clinical signs include the appearance of circular, firm nodes on the animal’s hide. They immediately start losing weight and have a reduced milk yield. Since its first outbreak is in 1928 in Africa, and no direct transmission of LSD to humans has been reported. Still, it is listed as a notifiable disease due to its social and economic impact on the places that it spreads in.
Is Human affected by LSD Virus:
Although no direct transmission of LSD to humans has been reported so far. When it comes to the spread of lumpy skin diseases to humans, there is currently limited information. However, health authorities say that the meat of infected animals is completely safe. However, the meat should be properly cooked prior to consumption.
Control of LSD Virus:
- Isolate the infected animals from healthy one.
- Viral vaccines are effective against the disease.
- Use of acaricides spray / insect repeller in the farms.
- Use of feed supplement to improve their health.
- Antibiotics, as well as NSAIDs, can help to control the spread of secondary infections.