The oral administration in single doses of the seeds of Ricinus communis, a shrub of the Euphorbiaceae family, caused poisoning characterized by gastroenteriritis in sheep. The whole seeds caused death of the four sheep which received 10 and 7.5 g/kg. The dose of 5 g/kg caused slight symptoms of poisoning and the dose of 2.5 g/kg no symptoms at all. The smashed seeds of R.communis caused death in two sheep which received 2.5 g/kg; the dose of 1.25 g/kg caused severe symptoms in one sheep; the dose of 1.25 g/kg given to four sheep and 0.625 g/kg given to two others did not cause any symptoms of poisoning. In the sheep which died, first symptoms were observed between 6h40min and 17h24min, and death occurred between 31h55min and 53h39min after the beginning of administration of the seeds. The clinical course of poisoning varied between 19h50min and 44h52min in these animals. The main symptoms were anorexia, apathy and colics, diarrhea with soft to liquid faeces of foetid odor with mucus and/or fibrine; finally the animals defecated in form of a jet of liquid faeces. The animals had increasing tachicardia. There was dryness of the skin with loss of its elasticity, and sunken eyballs indicating dehydration. In the final stage there was severe muscular weakness. The main post mortem findings were congestion and oedema of the gastrointestinal wall, from the abomasum to the proximal colon. The jejunum was extended and contained a large amount of a clear greenish liquid together with fibrine in form of cilinders, filaments and pseudomembranes; there were similar contents in the cecum and proximal colon. In those sheep which had received the whole seeds of R. communis some of them were found in the rumen. The main histological changes seen in the small intestine were necrosis of the upper layer of the mucosa, accompanied by congestion of the whole mucosa, as well as submucosa and serosa.
|Translated title of the contribution||Experimental poisoning by the seeds of Ricinus communis (Euphorbiaceae) in sheep|
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Pesquisa Veterinaria Brasileira|
|State||Published - Oct 1 1996|
- Plant poisoning
- Poisonous plants
- Ricinus communis