Clinic-pathological aspects and the pathogenesis of experimental abamectin poisoning were studied, after subcutaneous administration of different abamectin doses in 9 calves, as well as the clini-cal and pathological aspects of 74 cases of the iatrogenic poisoning with this drug in cattle, which occurred in the states of Rio Grande do Sul, Pará, Maranhão, Paraíba and Mato Grosso do Sul. From the 9 calves submitted to experimental administration of single doses, 5 calves died (4 calves received doses 6-10 times higher than recommended, and one received the therapeutic daily dose during 11 days). Abamectin poisoning induces neurological dysfunctions, characterized by an initial phase of hyperexcitability, followed by widespread muscular hypotony and progressive depression. No macroscopic or microscopic alterations were observed in the central nervous system or in any other organ. It is concluded that abamectin is an antihelmintic which should be used with restriction, because of the risks leading to death when used in young calves, even in therapeutic doses.
Abamectin poisoning; neurological alterations; calves