Psittacine Proventricular Dilatation Disease (PDD)

$20.00

Proventricular Dilatation Disease (PDD) is known by many names, including Macaw Wasting Disease and Neuropathic Gastric Dilatation. Considered to be caused by avian bornavirus, PDD is contagious and can result in high mortality. Diagnosis is difficult, often requiring a combination of multiple diagnostic tests and the clinical experience of your avian veterinarian. We recommend you visit your avian veterinary before and after performing the test to properly diagnose your bird’s health condition.

SKU: PDDVIRUS Category:

Description

Proventricular Dilatation Disease (PDD) is known by many names, including Macaw Wasting Disease and Neuropathic Gastric Dilatation. Considered to be caused by avian bornavirus, PDD is contagious and can result in high mortality. Diagnosis is difficult, often requiring a combination of multiple diagnostic tests and the clinical experience of your avian veterinarian. We recommend you visit your avian veterinary before and after performing the test to properly diagnose your bird’s health condition.

Proventricular Dilatation Disease is a disease of the nervous system and digestive tract of birds. Some birds may only show signs of nervous system disease, others will show signs related to the digestive system. Birds with PDD are unable to absorb nutrients due to the destruction of gastric motility and secondary improper digestion. It is now believed that PDD is associated with an avian bornavirus infection. The signs of the disease are caused by the virus as well as the reaction of the body’s immune system against the virus. birds can be infected with the virus, without it causing disease. So, a positive test does not necessarily mean the signs we are seeing in the bird are caused by bornavirus.

Symptoms

A bird with PDD will be depressed, regurgitate, pass whole seeds in the feces, and often show progressive central nervous system signs. These can include ataxia, the inability to perch, head tremors, and paralysis. Seizures may be the first presenting sign before any signals of gastric upset are evident.
Birds susceptible to PDD.

African Grey Parrot Young or old, imported or domestic, and male or female birds are equally at risk for PDD. For unknown reasons, a higher incidence of PDD is seen in macaws, cockatoos, African Grey Parrots and conures, although any of the psittacine are susceptible to this disease. Some non-psittacine birds, such as toucans, canaries, and weaver finches have been suspected of having this disease.

Guidelines for Current Diagnosis of PDD:

  • A bird is considered negative for PDD if he is healthy, has had repeated negative blood tests, and has had no contact with any other ABV-positive birds.
  • A bird is considered positive for PDD if he is ill with clinical symptoms, has had blood tests which are positive for ABV antibodies, and the results are confirmed by PCR.
  • A bird that is ill and suspected of having PDD is considered free of ABV if the serology is negative. He has probably not contracted the disease, and the PCR should validate that.
  • A bird that is clinically healthy but serologically positive is considered a carrier of ABV. If repeated PCR testing results are negative, he may be considered “clean.”