A prospective cohort study of digital cushion and corium thickness. Part 1: Associations with body condition, lesion incidence, and proximity to calving

RF Newsome, MJ Green, NJ Bell, NJ Bollard, CS Mason, HR Whay, JN Huxley

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Claw horn disruption lesions (CHDL) are a major cause of lameness in dairy cattle and are likely a result of excessive forces being applied to the germinal epithelium that produces the claw horn. The digital cushion is a connective tissue structure, containing depots of adipose tissue, that sits beneath the distal phalanx and has been shown to be thicker in fatter cows. Body condition score (BCS) loss is a risk factor for CHDL, and one possible explanation is that fat is mobilized from the digital cushion during negative energy balance, causing the digital cushion to thin and lose force-dissipating capacity, leading to disruption of claw horn growth. This prospective cohort study investigated the association between measures of body fat and sole soft tissue (SST) thickness (a combined measure of the corium and digital cushion beneath the distal phalanx) in a longitudinal manner. The SST of 179 cows in 2 high-yielding dairy herds were measured at 5 assessment points between 8 wk before and 35 wk postcalving. The BCS, back fat thickness (BFT), and lesion incidence were recorded. Data were analyzed in a 4-level mixed effects regression model, with the outcome being SST thickness beneath the flexor tuberosity of the distal phalanx. Data from 827 assessment points were available for analysis. The overall mean of SST was 4.99 mm (standard deviation: 0.95). The SST was thickest 8 wk before calving (5.22 mm, standard deviation: 0.91) and thinnest 1 wk postcalving (4.68 mm, standard deviation: 0.87), suggesting an effect of calving on SST. The BFT was positively correlated with SST in the model with a small effect size (a 10 mm decrease in BFT corresponded with a 0.13 mm decrease in SST), yet the nadir of BFT was 11.0 mm at 9 to 17 wk postcalving (when SST was ∼4.95 mm), rather than occurring with the nadir of SST immediately after calving. The SST also varied with other variables [e.g., cows that developed a sole ulcer or severe sole hemorrhage during the study had thinner SST (−0.24 mm)], except when a sole ulcer was present, when it was thicker (+0.53 mm). Cows that developed lesions had a thinner digital cushion before the lesion occurrence, which became thickened with sole ulcer presence, perhaps representing inflammation. Furthermore, although BFT was correlated with SST over time, SST may also have been influenced by other factors such as integrity of the suspensory apparatus, which could have a major effect on CHDL. Measures of body fat likely contributed to having thin SST, but other factors including calving, herd, and lesion presence also had an effect.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4745 - 4758
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Dairy Science
Volume100
Issue number6
Early online date21 Apr 2017
DOIs
Publication statusFirst published - 21 Apr 2017

Fingerprint

Dermis
Cohort Studies
Prospective Studies
Incidence
Hoof and Claw
Fats
Horns
Ulcer
Adipose Tissue
Thromboplastin
Connective Tissue
Epithelium

Keywords

  • Body condition
  • Dairy cow
  • Digital cushion
  • Lameness

Cite this

@article{78cf20de2d264feab3585dad49e0fafb,
title = "A prospective cohort study of digital cushion and corium thickness. Part 1: Associations with body condition, lesion incidence, and proximity to calving",
abstract = "Claw horn disruption lesions (CHDL) are a major cause of lameness in dairy cattle and are likely a result of excessive forces being applied to the germinal epithelium that produces the claw horn. The digital cushion is a connective tissue structure, containing depots of adipose tissue, that sits beneath the distal phalanx and has been shown to be thicker in fatter cows. Body condition score (BCS) loss is a risk factor for CHDL, and one possible explanation is that fat is mobilized from the digital cushion during negative energy balance, causing the digital cushion to thin and lose force-dissipating capacity, leading to disruption of claw horn growth. This prospective cohort study investigated the association between measures of body fat and sole soft tissue (SST) thickness (a combined measure of the corium and digital cushion beneath the distal phalanx) in a longitudinal manner. The SST of 179 cows in 2 high-yielding dairy herds were measured at 5 assessment points between 8 wk before and 35 wk postcalving. The BCS, back fat thickness (BFT), and lesion incidence were recorded. Data were analyzed in a 4-level mixed effects regression model, with the outcome being SST thickness beneath the flexor tuberosity of the distal phalanx. Data from 827 assessment points were available for analysis. The overall mean of SST was 4.99 mm (standard deviation: 0.95). The SST was thickest 8 wk before calving (5.22 mm, standard deviation: 0.91) and thinnest 1 wk postcalving (4.68 mm, standard deviation: 0.87), suggesting an effect of calving on SST. The BFT was positively correlated with SST in the model with a small effect size (a 10 mm decrease in BFT corresponded with a 0.13 mm decrease in SST), yet the nadir of BFT was 11.0 mm at 9 to 17 wk postcalving (when SST was ∼4.95 mm), rather than occurring with the nadir of SST immediately after calving. The SST also varied with other variables [e.g., cows that developed a sole ulcer or severe sole hemorrhage during the study had thinner SST (−0.24 mm)], except when a sole ulcer was present, when it was thicker (+0.53 mm). Cows that developed lesions had a thinner digital cushion before the lesion occurrence, which became thickened with sole ulcer presence, perhaps representing inflammation. Furthermore, although BFT was correlated with SST over time, SST may also have been influenced by other factors such as integrity of the suspensory apparatus, which could have a major effect on CHDL. Measures of body fat likely contributed to having thin SST, but other factors including calving, herd, and lesion presence also had an effect.",
keywords = "Body condition, Dairy cow, Digital cushion, Lameness",
author = "RF Newsome and MJ Green and NJ Bell and NJ Bollard and CS Mason and HR Whay and JN Huxley",
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A prospective cohort study of digital cushion and corium thickness. Part 1: Associations with body condition, lesion incidence, and proximity to calving. / Newsome, RF; Green, MJ; Bell, NJ; Bollard, NJ; Mason, CS; Whay, HR; Huxley, JN.

In: Journal of Dairy Science, Vol. 100, No. 6, 21.04.2017, p. 4745 - 4758.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

TY - JOUR

T1 - A prospective cohort study of digital cushion and corium thickness. Part 1: Associations with body condition, lesion incidence, and proximity to calving

AU - Newsome, RF

AU - Green, MJ

AU - Bell, NJ

AU - Bollard, NJ

AU - Mason, CS

AU - Whay, HR

AU - Huxley, JN

PY - 2017/4/21

Y1 - 2017/4/21

N2 - Claw horn disruption lesions (CHDL) are a major cause of lameness in dairy cattle and are likely a result of excessive forces being applied to the germinal epithelium that produces the claw horn. The digital cushion is a connective tissue structure, containing depots of adipose tissue, that sits beneath the distal phalanx and has been shown to be thicker in fatter cows. Body condition score (BCS) loss is a risk factor for CHDL, and one possible explanation is that fat is mobilized from the digital cushion during negative energy balance, causing the digital cushion to thin and lose force-dissipating capacity, leading to disruption of claw horn growth. This prospective cohort study investigated the association between measures of body fat and sole soft tissue (SST) thickness (a combined measure of the corium and digital cushion beneath the distal phalanx) in a longitudinal manner. The SST of 179 cows in 2 high-yielding dairy herds were measured at 5 assessment points between 8 wk before and 35 wk postcalving. The BCS, back fat thickness (BFT), and lesion incidence were recorded. Data were analyzed in a 4-level mixed effects regression model, with the outcome being SST thickness beneath the flexor tuberosity of the distal phalanx. Data from 827 assessment points were available for analysis. The overall mean of SST was 4.99 mm (standard deviation: 0.95). The SST was thickest 8 wk before calving (5.22 mm, standard deviation: 0.91) and thinnest 1 wk postcalving (4.68 mm, standard deviation: 0.87), suggesting an effect of calving on SST. The BFT was positively correlated with SST in the model with a small effect size (a 10 mm decrease in BFT corresponded with a 0.13 mm decrease in SST), yet the nadir of BFT was 11.0 mm at 9 to 17 wk postcalving (when SST was ∼4.95 mm), rather than occurring with the nadir of SST immediately after calving. The SST also varied with other variables [e.g., cows that developed a sole ulcer or severe sole hemorrhage during the study had thinner SST (−0.24 mm)], except when a sole ulcer was present, when it was thicker (+0.53 mm). Cows that developed lesions had a thinner digital cushion before the lesion occurrence, which became thickened with sole ulcer presence, perhaps representing inflammation. Furthermore, although BFT was correlated with SST over time, SST may also have been influenced by other factors such as integrity of the suspensory apparatus, which could have a major effect on CHDL. Measures of body fat likely contributed to having thin SST, but other factors including calving, herd, and lesion presence also had an effect.

AB - Claw horn disruption lesions (CHDL) are a major cause of lameness in dairy cattle and are likely a result of excessive forces being applied to the germinal epithelium that produces the claw horn. The digital cushion is a connective tissue structure, containing depots of adipose tissue, that sits beneath the distal phalanx and has been shown to be thicker in fatter cows. Body condition score (BCS) loss is a risk factor for CHDL, and one possible explanation is that fat is mobilized from the digital cushion during negative energy balance, causing the digital cushion to thin and lose force-dissipating capacity, leading to disruption of claw horn growth. This prospective cohort study investigated the association between measures of body fat and sole soft tissue (SST) thickness (a combined measure of the corium and digital cushion beneath the distal phalanx) in a longitudinal manner. The SST of 179 cows in 2 high-yielding dairy herds were measured at 5 assessment points between 8 wk before and 35 wk postcalving. The BCS, back fat thickness (BFT), and lesion incidence were recorded. Data were analyzed in a 4-level mixed effects regression model, with the outcome being SST thickness beneath the flexor tuberosity of the distal phalanx. Data from 827 assessment points were available for analysis. The overall mean of SST was 4.99 mm (standard deviation: 0.95). The SST was thickest 8 wk before calving (5.22 mm, standard deviation: 0.91) and thinnest 1 wk postcalving (4.68 mm, standard deviation: 0.87), suggesting an effect of calving on SST. The BFT was positively correlated with SST in the model with a small effect size (a 10 mm decrease in BFT corresponded with a 0.13 mm decrease in SST), yet the nadir of BFT was 11.0 mm at 9 to 17 wk postcalving (when SST was ∼4.95 mm), rather than occurring with the nadir of SST immediately after calving. The SST also varied with other variables [e.g., cows that developed a sole ulcer or severe sole hemorrhage during the study had thinner SST (−0.24 mm)], except when a sole ulcer was present, when it was thicker (+0.53 mm). Cows that developed lesions had a thinner digital cushion before the lesion occurrence, which became thickened with sole ulcer presence, perhaps representing inflammation. Furthermore, although BFT was correlated with SST over time, SST may also have been influenced by other factors such as integrity of the suspensory apparatus, which could have a major effect on CHDL. Measures of body fat likely contributed to having thin SST, but other factors including calving, herd, and lesion presence also had an effect.

KW - Body condition

KW - Dairy cow

KW - Digital cushion

KW - Lameness

U2 - 10.3168/jds.2016-12012

DO - 10.3168/jds.2016-12012

M3 - Article

VL - 100

SP - 4745

EP - 4758

JO - Journal of Dairy Science

JF - Journal of Dairy Science

SN - 0022-0302

IS - 6

ER -