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2009, Vol. 4 No. 1, Article 37


A note on Ivermectin and Clorsulon treatment of Cattle Infested with Subcutaneous Parasites

K. A. Shah*1 and S. A. Andrabi1

1 Department of Animal Husbandry,
Kashmir, India

*Corresponding Author; e-mail address: khurshid@kashvet.org



Seven crossbred cattle infested with non-specific subcutaneous parasites were given a single subcutaneous injection of a parasiticidal preparation that provided a dose level of 0.2mg ivermectin and 2mg clorsulon per kg liveweight. Additionally, phenylbutazone @ 20 mg /kg liveweight was administered intramuscularly for four days. A complete recovery ensued within 2 weeks of treatment.


Ivermectin, Clorsulon, subcutaneous parasite.


Subcutaneous parasitic infestation in cattle in India and abroad is caused by certain arthropods of the Hypoderma and Dermatobia species and filaroid nematodes of Parafilaria, Stephanofilaria and Onchocerca species which are transmitted by hematophagus vectors.
The affected animals do not show any marked clinical signs until larvae appear along the body coat and nodular or soft fluctuating painful swellings develop under skin at neck, brisket or shoulders and dorsal aspect of the body.
Subcutaneous parasitism inflicts great economic losses to cattle owners by causing reduction in milk production (up to 10 to 20%), loss of body condition, depreciation of value of meat and hide or even mortality in certain cases due to migration of larvae to vital organs (Soulsby, 1986) Present communication deals with the reporting satisfactory treatment of non-specific subcutaneous parasitic infestation in cattle.


Seven crossbred cows, aged between 4 to 7 yrs, exhibited clinical signs suggestive of subcutaneous parasitic infestation. A single subcutaneous injection at a dose of 1ml/50 kg live weight was given aseptically by inserting a 16 gauge needle in loose skin in front of shoulder. This provided a dose level of 0.2mg ivermectin and 2mg clorsulon per kg bodyweight. Two days later, phenylbutazone 20mg/kg bodyweight was administered daily for four days. All animals were kept under close observation for two weeks.


Clinically the affected animals were in poor body condition and yielded significantly low. Painful fluctuating or nodular swellings under skin were observed in brisket region or on shoulders and dorsal aspect of body (Fig 1-4) corroborating with the signs reported by Soulsby loc-cit.
After treatment with ivermectin and clorsulon (supported with phenyl butazone), all the seven animals showed a marked clinical improvement during first week and a complete recovery with disappearance of local swellings (Fig 5) was achieved two weeks post treatment. Phenyl butazone was used to counteract effects of toxins liberated if any, by the dead parasites after treatment. These toxins often cause systemic reaction or local inflammatory oedematous swelling (Blood et al, 1995). Efficacy of ivermectin against sub-cutaneous parasites from Onchocerca and Hypoderma species was earlier reported by Klei et al (1980) and Soulsby (1986).
Antiparasitic activity of ivermectin results from an increased release of the neuro-transmitter gama amino butyric acid (GABA). Clorsulon , primarily a flukicide and nematocide inhibits enzyme system of the parasite and is reported to be 100% efficacious against helminths and flukes (Campbell and Benz, 2007) and (Nasreen et al, 2008). Injectables comprising of 1% w/v ivermectin and 10% w/v clorsulon were reported highly efficacious against subcutaneous and ecto-parasitism due to Hypoderma, Bovicola, Sarcoptis and Psoroptes species in goat (Marsy et al, 2001), cattle (OSU bulletin)and dog (Marsy et al, 2001).


  1. Campbell , WC & Benz, GW ; Ivermectin- a review of efficacy and safety, Physiol.behav. 2007, 22:92(3)340-47

  2. Klei TR, Torbert BJ and Ochoa R. Efficacy of ivermectin against adult Setaria equina and microfilaria of Onchocerca cervicalis in ponies. 1980, J. Parasit. 66: 859-861

  3. Marsy TA, Habib KS and Haridy FM. Ivermectin and clorsulon (Ivomec super) in treatment of goat naturally infested with scab mites and biting lice. J.Egypt.soc.parasitol. 2001, 31 (2) 373-79

  4. Marsy TA, Abdul Mawla MY and Marsy AT. The effect of Ivomec super ( Ivermectin and clorsulon) on dogs experimentally infected with Psorcoptes scabei isolated from a patient. J.Egypt.soc.parasitol. 2001, 31 (1) 79-85

  5. Nasreen S, Khan MRT, Peerzada S and Andrabi SA, Efficacy of different anthelmintic formulations against helminth infestation in sheep. 2008, Vetscan Vol. 3 No.2

  6. OSU bulletin on parasiticidal application for non lactatin and beef cattle, (www.ohioline .osu.edu/b473/pdf/b473_3.pdf)

  7. Radostitis OM, Gay CC, Blood DC and Hinchcliff, KW. Veterinary Medicine A textbook of the diseases of Cattle, Sheep, Pig, Goats and Horses. 2000, WB Saunders company

  8. Soulsby EJL (1986) Helminths , Arthopods and Protozoa of Domesticated Animals.7th ed. Balliere Tindall, London p 370-400

Fig. 1-4
Swellings on skin of affected animal

Subcutaneous parasites cattlesubcutaneous parasites cattlesubcutaneous parasites cattlesubcutaneous parasites cattle

Fig. 5
Post recovery

clear skin


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