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Pulmonary Hypersensitivity Disease - Macaws and Conures

Discussion in 'Diseases' started by Hankmacaw, 10/17/12.

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  1. Hankmacaw

    Hankmacaw Biking along the boulevard Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran Crash Test Dummy

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    Mary Lynn Skinner
    RESPIRATORY DISEASE IN SOUTH AMERICAN SPECIES

    ESPECIALLY MACAWS AND CONURES

    Pulmonary Hypersensitivity Syndrome

    Although good ventilation is necessary for any type of bird, it is especially critical
    for South American species. Blue and Gold Macaws, as well as Sun Conures
    seem especially sensitive to airborne irritants. They may develop a progressive
    respiratory disease known as "pulmonary hypersensitivity syndrome” if housed in
    a poorly ventilated room, especially if kept with birds that produce a great deal of
    powder: Cockatoos, Cockatiels, Lovebirds or African Grey Parrots.

    This powder is produced by specialized "powder down feathers" and is a white
    waxy substance composed of keratin. Powder down forms a water proof barrier
    for contour feathers. It is spread through the feathers when the bird grooms. The
    down is composed of very fine particulate matter which becomes airborne easily
    and spreads via air currents and air ducts throughout the environment.

    The powder down can also cause irritation to people with respiratory problems and
    allergies. People with allergies may be able to tolerate these birds, but they should
    be aware of this before acquiring one of these dusty species.


    In the early stages of pulmonary hypersensitivity syndrome, the bird may appear
    normal, but wheeze when excited. As the condition progresses, dyspnea (difficulty
    in breathing), a cough, and a bluish tinge to the facial skin (cyanosis) develops.
    Hypoxia or under oxygenation of tissues often leads to an increase in the number of
    circulating red blood cells (RBC) termed Polycythemia. This increases the viscosity
    of the blood so that it does not flow normally. Subsequent immuno- suppression
    may lead to Aspergillosis, a deadly respiratory fungal disease.


    Clinical symptoms, blood work, and high resolution digital radiographs may
    support the diagnosis, but a lung biopsy is necessary for confirmation.


    In order to prevent this, South American Species should be housed in well
    ventilated rooms without Cockatoos, Cockatiels, Lovebirds, or African Grey Parrots.


    In addition, an air cleaner with a HEPA filter is highly recommended.


    Unfortunately, this pulmonary disease is often advanced when the owner first notice
    the problem get it diagnosed by a trained avian veterinarian familiar with this
    syndrome. Certain drugs may provide temporary relief, but there is no cure for this
    syndrome.

    (Underline added)
     
  2. Mizzely

    Mizzely Joyriding the Neighborhood Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran Crash Test Dummy Vendor

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    Shawna
    Good information, maybe should be a sticky in diseases, macaw motorway, and conure court :)
     
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  3. expressmailtome

    expressmailtome Ripping up the road Administrator Celebirdy of the Month Mayor of the Avenue Avenue Spotlight Award Avenue Veteran

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    Matthew
    This is important for everyone with macaws and conures to read.

    Matt
     
  4. Stormcloud

    Stormcloud Squawk Talk!

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    Gerard
    Good post ML. Important info as to why it is advantageous to give these birds "outside time" every few days where possible.
     
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