Authors

Kristina Kaleel

Document Type

Internship Report

Publication Date

Fall 2018

Abstract

Pneumonia is an acute or chronic infection due to primary or secondary bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic pathogens that inflame the air sacs in one or both of the lungs. This respiratory disease is a common illness exhibited by marine mammals, such as phocids, and is typically treated via oral/parenteral medications and/or nebulization therapy. A three-part project was conducted at Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Clinic that focused on pneumonia in stranded phocid species. The objective of Part I was to develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for nebulization therapy in stranded phocids diagnosed with pneumonia based on protocols already in place, and to investigate the literature to determine if there may be more effective disinfecting methods for the nebulization apparatuses utilized. The goal was to then generate a quick reference document with the compiled information. The objective of Part II was to evaluate health and demographic parameters in phocid pneumonia cases between 2015-2017, to identify trends among diseased individuals. The objective of Part III was to create a reference guide documenting respiratory pathogens found in marine mammals, with an emphasis on phocids, that could lead to pneumonia, and evaluate the current treatments and disinfectants used at the Animal Rescue Clinic to determine their spectrum of coverage. For Part I, the SOP will provide a structured guideline to ensure proper administration of nebulization therapy to the stranded seals. Moreover, after investigation of the literature, it was determined that baby-bottle steam sterilizers were highly effective in disinfecting nebulization apparatuses. Ultimately, the nebulization disinfection reference document will serve as a guideline to ensure proper sanitation practices to Pneumonia is an acute or chronic infection due to primary or secondary bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic pathogens that inflame the air sacs in one or both of the lungs. This respiratory disease is a common illness exhibited by marine mammals, such as phocids, and is typically treated via oral/parenteral medications and/or nebulization therapy. A three-part project was conducted at Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Clinic that focused on pneumonia in stranded phocid species. The objective of Part I was to develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for nebulization therapy in stranded phocids diagnosed with pneumonia based on protocols already in place, and to investigate the literature to determine if there may be more effective disinfecting methods for the nebulization apparatuses utilized. The goal was to then generate a quick reference document with the compiled information. The objective of Part II was to evaluate health and demographic parameters in phocid pneumonia cases between 2015-2017, to identify trends among diseased individuals. The objective of Part III was to create a reference guide documenting respiratory pathogens found in marine mammals, with an emphasis on phocids, that could lead to pneumonia, and evaluate the current treatments and disinfectants used at the Animal Rescue Clinic to determine their spectrum of coverage. For Part I, the SOP will provide a structured guideline to ensure proper administration of nebulization therapy to the stranded seals. Moreover, after investigation of the literature, it was determined that baby-bottle steam sterilizers were highly effective in disinfecting nebulization apparatuses. Ultimately, the nebulization disinfection reference document will serve as a guideline to ensure proper sanitation practices to Pneumonia is an acute or chronic infection due to primary or secondary bacterial, viral, fungal or parasitic pathogens that inflame the air sacs in one or both of the lungs. This respiratory disease is a common illness exhibited by marine mammals, such as phocids, and is typically treated via oral/parenteral medications and/or nebulization therapy. A three-part project was conducted at Mystic Aquarium’s Animal Rescue Clinic that focused on pneumonia in stranded phocid species. The objective of Part I was to develop a standard operating procedure (SOP) for nebulization therapy in stranded phocids diagnosed with pneumonia based on protocols already in place, and to investigate the literature to determine if there may be more effective disinfecting methods for the nebulization apparatuses utilized. The goal was to then generate a quick reference document with the compiled information. The objective of Part II was to evaluate health and demographic parameters in phocid pneumonia cases between 2015-2017, to identify trends among diseased individuals. The objective of Part III was to create a reference guide documenting respiratory pathogens found in marine mammals, with an emphasis on phocids, that could lead to pneumonia, and evaluate the current treatments and disinfectants used at the Animal Rescue Clinic to determine their spectrum of coverage. For Part I, the SOP will provide a structured guideline to ensure proper administration of nebulization therapy to the stranded seals. Moreover, after investigation of the literature, it was determined that baby-bottle steam sterilizers were highly effective in disinfecting nebulization apparatuses. Ultimately, the nebulization disinfection reference document will serve as a guideline to ensure proper sanitation practices to prevent the cross-contamination of pathogens and spread of disease. For Part II, various hematology and chemistry values showed a significant difference in the data at the time of pneumonia diagnosis relative to values just prior to release. Thin body condition and an abnormal pulmonary auscultation were two of the strongest indicators characterizing pneumonia infection. The results of this study will serve as a baseline for further investigation into pneumonia in stranded phocids. For Part III, the reference guide primarily focused on bacterial respiratory pathogens, as bacterial pneumonia is commonly seen at the Animal Rescue Clinic. The treatments and disinfectants currently used at the clinic were determined to cover the spectrum of opportunistic pathogens that have been documented in marine mammals and could lead to pneumonia. Further investigation should be conducted with the development of bacterial resistance and evolution of new strains. Moreover, viral, fungal, and parasitic pathogens should be investigated in greater detail.

Comments

Department:MBE

MPS Track: MMS

Location: Mystic Aquarium

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