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Ape Preventative Health Guidelines

GUIDELINES FOR APE

PREVENTATIVE HEALTH PROGRAM

 

Routine health monitoring should be performed on a regular basis.  The following protocol advises that specific baseline laboratory tests be performed for the purpose of evaluating current health status.  Additional tests are recommended to increase baseline information on other diseases to determine their significance to ape health.  The final decision for specific procedures and their frequency should be made by the institutional animal care and veterinary staff based on individual circumstances.

Minimum Database:

 1.  Signalment -  age, sex, origin, studbook #, ISIS #

2.      Anamnesis – Previous medical history (including previous health screens, medical problems, diagnostic test results, treatments, contraception, anesthetic data and diet information

3.   Complete physical examination should be performed by a veterinarian familiar with ape health issues, including complete review of systems (ophthalmic, otic, dental,  lymphatic, cardiovascular, respiratory, abdominal palpation, musculoskeletal, urogenital, neurologic).

4.   Body weight. Morphometric data if requested by the SSP.

5.   Verification of permanent identification – transponder, tattoo

6.      Radiographs - thoracic and abdominal, VD and lateral. Include limbs of geriatric individuals to screen for arthritic changes.  Oblique views of teeth  taken with jaws open to screen for dental pathology is recommended. 

7.   Negative tuberculin skin test: 0.1 ml of mammalian tuberculin, human isolates (Colorado Serum Co., Synbiotics Corp.) administered intradermally and visually evaluated by veterinary staff for reaction at 24, 48 and 72 hours. Concurrent testing with avian tuberculin may be useful.

8.      Cardiovascular status, using electrocardiogram, echocardiogram, and blood pressure measurements, is recommended to screen apes for high blood pressure and cardiac disease.  If possible, these tests should be performed whenever apes are immobilized for routine and diagnostic procedures.  Zoos are also encouraged to train apes for voluntary measurement of these parameters.  Transthoracic echocardiography is usually sufficient to obtain complete cardiac examination in all but the largest animals.  However, transesophageal echocardiography can give improved cardiac views in deep-chested animals and is necessary for complete imaging of the aorta, especially the descending portion.  Due to reports of aortic dissection in gorillas, transesophageal echocardiography is recommended in this species whenever possible. A complete cardiac study includes 2-dimensional images to assess the anatomic relationship and motion of the heart structures, M-mode unidimensional images for cardiac measurements, Doppler analysis to assess blood flow through the heart, and echophonocardiography for evaluation of heart sounds and murmurs.  Recommended measurements include (but are not limited to): aortic cusp separation, aortic root dimension, left atrium, right ventricle, interventricular septum, left ventricle in diastole, left ventricle in systole, left ventricular posterior wall in diastole, left ventricular posterior wall in systole, fractional shortening percentage, ejection fraction percentage, mitral valve, aortic valve, tricuspid valve and pulmonic valve.  If your zoo is willing to contribute measurements for the development of  reference ranges, please send blood pressure measurements, echocardiographic measurements, echocardiograms, and concurrent anesthesia information to the SSP Veterinary Advisor.

9.   Blood collection

·        Complete blood count

·        Serum chemistry panel, including cholesterol, triglycerides, HDL, LDL and VLDL, and protein electrophoresis.  Consider adding baseline thyroid testing (free and total T3, free and total T4 and TSH), Vitamin B12 and folate.

·        C reactive protein is a strong marker for cardiac disease risk in humans and may be effective in apes, but this has not been proven.  Measuring this protein in healthy and ill animals may provide information for determining whether it is also a marker for cardiac disease in the different ape species. 

·        Serologic testing appropriate for species:

Gibbon and Siamang (SSP recommendations)

Herpes simplex 1 and 2, Herpes B, Cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, Varicella-zoster, Hepatitis A, B and C, Simian T-cell lymphotropic virus, Simian retrovirus, Simian immunodeficiency virus, Simian foamy virus, and measles

                        Chimpanzee (SSP recommendations)

Parainfluenza I, II and III, Influenza A and B, Respiratory syncytial virus, Hepatitis A, B and C, Herpes B, Herpes simplex 1 and 2, Human immunodeficiency virus, Simian immunodeficiency virus, Simian T-cell lymphotrophic virus (for STLV, recommend using the Simian Retrovirus Laboratory, Nicholas W. Lerche, DVM, Director, California Regional Primate Research Center, Road 98 at Hutchison, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 USA, 530-752-8242), Cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, Varicella-zoster, measles

                        Bonobo (SSP recommendations)

Parainfluenza I, II and III, Influenza A and B, Respiratory syncytial virus, Hepatitis A, B and C, Herpes B, Herpes simplex 1 and 2, Human immunodeficiency virus, Simian immunodeficiency virus, Simian T-cell lymphotrophic virus (for STLV, recommend using the Simian Retrovirus Laboratory, Nicholas W. Lerche, DVM, Director, California Regional Primate Research Center, Road 98 at Hutchison, University of California, Davis, CA 95616 USA, 530-752-8242), Cytomegalovirus, Epstein-Barr virus, Varicella-zoster, measles.

                        Orangutan (SSP recommendation)

Parainfluenza I, II and III, Influenza A and B, Hepatitis A, B and C – contact SSP Advisor regarding positive individuals

                        Gorilla (SSP recommendation)

Respiratory syncytial virus, Hepatitis B, Varicella-zoster, Herpes simplex 1 and 2, measles

·        Bank at least 2 ml of serum.

·        Bank genetic material as recommended by BBAG protocol.

 

10. Fecal analyses

·        Negative parasite screen – direct, flotation and sedimentation of feces for detection of endoparasites

·        Negative fecal culture for enteric pathogens (Salmonella sp., Shigella sp., Campylobacter sp., pathogenic E.coli).

 

11. Verify contraceptive method (if any).  See AZA Contraceptive Advisory Group recommendations (http://stlzoo.org/downloads/CAGrecs2004.pdf).  Send in contraceptive survey annually for reversible methods.

 

12.      Vaccinations

·        Killed rabies 1 ml intramuscular every 1-3 years, where applicable based on local rabies epidemiology and status.

·        Tetanus toxoid 1 ml intramuscular every 1-10 years.

·        Pneumococcal vaccination once in childhood with geriatric booster for bonobos and orangutans.

·        Influenza vaccination – Bonobo: consider yearly in early fall prior to influenza season. Consider annual vaccination of animal care staff to enhance biosecurity.

·        Measles vaccination – optional; colony specific decision.  Measles is now considered a foreign disease in humans in the USA.  Attenuvax modified live vaccine has been given to apes and primates in the past with no reported adverse effects, but risk of shedding live virus and susceptibility of pregnant females and fetus is unquantified.

·        Consider childhood vaccination based on human schedule for all apes, including killed polio series and Haemophilus vaccination (http://www.cdc.gove/nip/child-schedule.htm). Recommended by Orangutan SSP Vet Advisor.

 

Revised August 2004

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