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Clinical signs, diagnosis, and treatment of lead intoxication in an electric eel (Electrophorus electricus)


Wenger, Sandra; Pendl, Helene; Tahas, Stamos; Bochmann, Monika; Hatt, Jean-Michel (2018). Clinical signs, diagnosis, and treatment of lead intoxication in an electric eel (Electrophorus electricus). Journal of Zoo and Wildlife Medicine, 49(4):1029-1031.

Abstract

An adult, wild-caught electric eel (Electrophorus electricus), weighing 18 kg and measuring 2 m in length, presented with bilateral swellings behind the pectoral fins, lethargy, and anorexia for 2 days. Anesthesia was performed with immersion in tricaine methanesulphonate and supplemented with 0.11 mg/kg medetomidine and 2.2 mg/kg ketamine intramuscularly. Endoscopy revealed blood in the oral and gastric cavity. The stomach was grossly enlarged, flaccid, and contained a lead wire which was removed manually. Blood lead values were severely elevated. The fish was treated with 28 mg/kg calcium disodium ethylenediaminetetraacetate intramuscularly every 72 hr for 5 doses, which resulted in an improved clinical condition. Because lead values had not decreased to normal values within 4 wk of initial presentation, 35 mg/kg dimercaptosuccinic acid was given orally twice weekly for 3 wk. The electric eel made a full recovery.

Abstract

An adult, wild-caught electric eel (Electrophorus electricus), weighing 18 kg and measuring 2 m in length, presented with bilateral swellings behind the pectoral fins, lethargy, and anorexia for 2 days. Anesthesia was performed with immersion in tricaine methanesulphonate and supplemented with 0.11 mg/kg medetomidine and 2.2 mg/kg ketamine intramuscularly. Endoscopy revealed blood in the oral and gastric cavity. The stomach was grossly enlarged, flaccid, and contained a lead wire which was removed manually. Blood lead values were severely elevated. The fish was treated with 28 mg/kg calcium disodium ethylenediaminetetraacetate intramuscularly every 72 hr for 5 doses, which resulted in an improved clinical condition. Because lead values had not decreased to normal values within 4 wk of initial presentation, 35 mg/kg dimercaptosuccinic acid was given orally twice weekly for 3 wk. The electric eel made a full recovery.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:05 Vetsuisse Faculty > Veterinary Clinic > Department of Small Animals
Dewey Decimal Classification:570 Life sciences; biology
630 Agriculture
Scopus Subject Areas:Life Sciences > Animal Science and Zoology
Health Sciences > General Veterinary
Uncontrolled Keywords:Animal Science and Zoology, General Veterinary, General Medicine, Ca EDTA; DMSA; electric eel; lead intoxication
Language:English
Date:1 December 2018
Deposited On:08 Feb 2019 16:58
Last Modified:29 Jul 2020 10:05
Publisher:American Association of Zoo Veterinarians
ISSN:1042-7260
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1638/018-0006.1
PubMed ID:30592928

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