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Some Observations on Endemic Fluorosis in Domestic Animals in Southern Rajasthan (India)

Abstract

Chronic fluoride toxicity in the form of osteo-dental fluorosis was observed in cattle, buffaloes, sheep and goats from 21 villages of Banswara, Dungarpur and Udaipur districts of Southern Rajasthan where the mean fluoride concentration in drinking water varied from 1.5 to 4.0 ppm. The prevalence of dental fluorosis in calves (<1 year age) was greater than that in adult cattle and buffaloes. At a fluoride concentration in the water of 4.0 ppm, 100% of calves, 65.6% of buffaloes and 61.0% of cattle were found to be affected with dental fluorosis to varying degrees. In the older group of buffaloes, their teeth were brownish black instead of creamy yellow as found in calves and cattle. Out of 780 goats and 564 sheep, none revealed evidence of osteo-dental fluorosis. The overall prevalence of skeletal fluorosis was 8.5%, with the highest prevalence of 29.0% in cattle and 37.5% in buffaloes at a fluoride concentration of 3.2 ppm. None of the calves were affected with skeletal fluorosis. Intermittent lameness was observed in the older group of animals (>7 years age) at 2.8 ppm fluoride or more in the water. None of the fluorotic animals exhibited any apparent evidence of hypothyroidism, stunted growth or low milk production. There was no correlation between gender and the prevalence of fluorosis, but the prevalence and severity of skeletal fluorosis increased with increasing fluoride concentration and age. Possible factors causing variation in fluorosis in the cattle and buffaloes in villages with identical fluoride concentrations are discussed.

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Correspondence to S.L. Choubisa.

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Choubisa, S. Some Observations on Endemic Fluorosis in Domestic Animals in Southern Rajasthan (India). Vet Res Commun 23, 457–465 (1999). https://doi.org/10.1023/A:1006325710222

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  • buffaloes
  • cattle
  • fluoride
  • goats
  • osteo-dental fluorosis
  • sheep
  • teeth
  • water