Experimental poisoning by Dodonea viscosa (Sapindaceae) in cattle

The leaves of Dodonea viscosa were force fed to five bovines. Four received the leaves in fresh green stage and the fifth dried ones. Clinical signs were observed in four of the bovines that died; the fifth did not show signs of poisoning. The fresh green plant was proved to be toxic from a dose of 25g/kg on. Dried leaves fed at the dose of 30 g/kg were also toxic. All the animals that died showed clinical signs from 13h30min to 45h after the ingestion of the plant and and death followed within about 48h. The clinical course lasted for about 8h30min until death. The main symptoms where apathy, anorexia, slight tenesmus, muscle trembling, difficulties to keep consciousness, pressing the head against obstacles, lateral recumbency, paddling movements, coma and death. The most significant macroscopic alterations were observed in the liver, with accentuation of the lobular pattern, dark-red areas interspersed with yellowish areas. Petechiae were found in serosal membranes of the abdominal and thoracic organs as well as the intestines. The main microscopic change was hepatic centrolobular coagulative necrosis, associated with congestion and hemorrhages.

Dodonea viscosa; diseases of cattle; plant poisoning; hepatocellular necrosis


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