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Determining the predictive capability of a Clinical Assessment Scoring Chart to differentiate severity of the clinical consequences of neonatal calf diarrhea relative to gold-standard blood gas analysis
Dillane, Patrick; Krump, Lea; Kennedy, Emer; Sayers, Riona; Sayers, Gearóid P.
Neonatal calf diarrhea (NCD) is a major problem to calf health worldwide, in terms of both morbidity and mortality. A five-point ordinal scale clinical assessment scoring (CAS) chart was utilized to assess calves suffering from NCD-related clinical abnormalities (acidosis and dehydration) on commercial farms. The objective of this research was to determine the predictive capability of this CAS chart against gold standard blood gas parameters, designed to assist farmers in the accurate assessment of the clinical consequences of NCD. A total of 443 diarrheic and non-diarrheic calves were enrolled in the study. The CAS chart rated a calf’s health from no clinical signs to varying degrees of clinical severity on a 0 (clinically normal) to 4 (grave) scale, based on clinical indicators including calf demeanour, ear position, mobility, suckle reflex, desire-to-feed, and enophthalmos. Blood gas analysis was conducted for individual calves, consisting of pH, base excess, Na+, K+, Ca2+, Cl−, glucose, total hemoglobin, bicarbonate, anion gap, and strong ion difference. Statistical evaluation was performed by comparison of the CAS score with blood gas profiles using ordinal logistic regression and a non-parametric estimation of the Receiver Operating Characteristics (ROC). The ROC analysis indicated that the CAS chart had acceptable specificity (>95%) with low sensitivity (<60%) in differentiating clinically normal from acidotic/dehydrated cases. Assessment of individual severity classes indicated that the chart can predict and differentiate both clinically normal and advanced cases from the other severity classes (peak estimations >80%) but had reduced accuracy in differentiating mild and moderate cases (peak estimations >50%). The chart, as presented, provides a simple tool to differentiate clinically normal from calves suffering the consequences of diarrhea, but fails to accurately differentiate severity for NCD related acidosis and dehydration. Further efforts are required to enhance the sensitivity and differential diagnostic value of this type of chart.
Keyword(s): General Agricultural and Biological Sciences; blood gas analysis; clinical assesment scoring chart; neonatal calf diarrhea
Publication Date:
Type: Other
Peer-Reviewed: Yes
Language(s): English
Institution: Teagasc
Citation(s): 15
Publisher(s): Public Library of Science (PLoS)
First Indexed: 2020-07-29 07:13:59 Last Updated: 2020-08-25 07:05:32