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What to do following the discovery of animal tuberculosis with Mycobacterium bovis?

An increase in bovine tuberculosis outbreaks has been observed for several years. In this context, the HCSP is issuing recommendations on the subject.

After a presentation of M. bovis and its specificities compared to M. tuberculosis, the clinical manifestations in cattle, the epidemiology and the organisation of surveillance in farm animals and in wildlife in France and in neighbouring countries are detailed.

Different systems are used to monitor human infections in France and Europe. Animal-to-human transmission is by air or digestive route (unpasteurised milk). Compared to infections due to M. tuberculosis, there is little clinical difference (lymph node involvement is more frequent) and the diagnostic tools are the same.

The HCSP describes what to do in the event of confirmation of animal tuberculosis in a herd by the veterinary services. If an animal is declared potentially contagious by the veterinary services, an investigation must be carried out by the CLAT in order to identify human contacts with exposure to risk as well as those working or living on the farm without exposure to risk but presenting vulnerabilities. The therapeutic management must take into account the resistance of M bovis to pyrazinamide.

The HCSP also recommends strengthening the coordination of the various services involved in the management of this disease as well as European harmonisation and collaboration

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