Laminitis in lambs injected with lactic acid

L. L. Morrow, M. E. Tumbleson, L. D. Kintner, W. H. Pfander, R. L. Preston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Overingestion of readily fermentable carbohydrates was induced experimentally in lambs by the injection of lactic acid into the rumen. Resulting changes in blood constituents and pathologic changes in the feet were examined and correlated with signs of laminitis (founder). The intraruminal injection of lactic acid caused an immediate increase in serum inorganic phosphorus concentrations and hyperkalemia. Later, hypocalcemia, hyponatremia and hypokalemia were observed. Injected lambs had gross and microscopic signs of acute laminitis. The signs of laminitis were edema, venous pooling of blood, lymphatic stasis of the coria of the feet, and congestions of blood in the capillaries of sensitive laminae. Degenerative changes occurred in the nuclei of the stratum germinativum of the insensitive laminae, leading to a separation of the stratum germinativum from the stratum corneum. This may be a crucial step in the pathogenesis of pedal rotation. The injection of lactic acid into the rumen caused ulcers to form in the rumen.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1305-1307
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican journal of veterinary research
Issue number10
StatePublished - 1973
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Veterinary


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