ARCHIVE: Teschen Disease

If you suspect signs of any notifiable disease, you must immediately notify a Defra Divisional Veterinary Manager.

Animals affected


History and spread of the disease

This is a nervous condition affecting pigs, which was first reported from Czechoslovakia in 1929. This disease was established in most European countries by 1950 and then in Canada, the United States and Australasia. However, there have been no outbreaks of this disease in any country in recent years.

Clinical signs

Initially there is fever, loss of appetite, lassitude and slight inco-ordination of movement. As the disease progresses there is irritability, stiffness, muscular tremors or rigidity, and convulsions. There may also be grinding of the teeth, smacking of the lips and squealing as if in pain. The voice may change or be lost entirely.

The course of the disease is usually acute and death, generally preceded by paralysis, normally occurs within three to four days of the appearance of symptoms. Mildly affected animals may recover. All age groups of pigs are susceptible to this disease.

Post mortem

There are no obvious post-mortem lesions.

Great Britain Legislation

The Teschen Disease Order 1974 made this disease compulsorily notifiable, provided for declaration of an infected place and the rules to be observed, as well as movement restrictions and cleansing and disinfection. This Order was revoked and replaced by the Specified Diseases (Notification and Slaughter) Order 1992 which includes Teschen disease among other diseases which are compulsorily notifiable and gives the Minister powers to slaughter animals found to have those diseases.

EU Legislation

Until now, rules for control Teschen disease were included in the provisions of Council Directive 92/119. However, EU Directive 2002/60 removed the controls, because no outbreaks of this disease have been recorded world-wide for a number of years and the disease risk of removing controls is believed to be minimal.



Page last modified: September 14, 2009