Factors predisposing to uterine infections in cows

Risk factors for the establishment of uterine bacterial disease in cattle Adapted from Sheldon and Dobson (2004).

Uterine damage

  • Stillbirth, twins, dystocia, caesarean section
  • Retained placenta
  • Delayed uterine involution

Metabolic conditions

  • Milk fever
  • ketosis
  • left displaced abomasum

Balance between pathogenicity and immunity

  • Disruption of neutrophil function
  • Type of bacterial flora in the uterine lumen
  • Progesterone or glucocorticoid administration - early formation of corpus luteum
  • Level of hygiene of the environment - cows or calving boxes may be less important


retained placenta

Retained placenta post calving can predispose to uterine infections