Antibiotics (Basel). 2021 Feb 15;10(2):189. doi: 10.3390/antibiotics10020189.
Danish veterinarians' treatment approach and use of antibiotics for clinical mastitis were investigated through a web-based questionnaire. The objective of the study was to describe and evaluate how the clinical mastitis treatment practice in Danish dairy herds corresponds to evidence from the literature and legislative requirements, in order to suggest directions for improvements and approaches encouraging the prudent use of antibiotics. In total, 174 veterinarians working with cattle received the questionnaire and 85 (48.9%) completed it. Their answers suggested that the Danish treatment approach for clinical mastitis generally relies on combined systemic and intramammary antibiotic administration (92% would use this often or always) and almost always includes supportive treatment with nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (99% would use it often or always in combination with antibiotic therapy). While collecting milk samples in order to target treatment towards pathogens is a priority in the legislation and for veterinarians, the direct application seems hindered due to the waiting time with the currently used analysis practice. Consequently, 91% reported that they would start treatment immediately after clinical examination often or always. The results of this investigation show that there is a potential for improvement in targeting treatments towards the causative pathogen by encouraging methods that allow for a more rapid reliable pathogen determination. When this issue has been addressed, the available evidence on the best treatment practice of Gram-negative-caused mastitis cases can be applied properly, reducing the volume of antibiotic treatments with limited expected effect. Additionally, investigating the potential of reducing combined administration to only intramammary treatment in Gram-positive cases could be a further step towards a more prudent antibiotic strategy.