Quantifying the beliefs of key players in the UK sheep industry on the efficacy of two treatments for footrot

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Colleges, School and Institutes


Clinical trials have demonstrated that sheep with footrot treated with parenteral and topical antibiotic treatment without foot trimming (treatment A), have achieved cure faster than sheep treated with foot trimming and topical antibiotic (treatment B). We investigated how key players in the UK sheep industry recommended treating footrot, and tested whether reviewing the evidence surrounding treatment of footrot changed their beliefs. Eight key players attended a workshop to investigate current practice, and their perceived efficacy of treatments using probabilistic elicitation. All participants recommended use of antibiotic injection but only four recommended not foot trimming feet with footrot. Initial beliefs in the difference in cure rate within five days of treatment ranged from 30-97% in favour of treatment A (true difference 60%); this heterogeneity reduced after reviewing the evidence. Participants who believed the cure rate differed by >60% over-estimated the cure rate of treatment A whilst participants who believed the difference was


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-20
Number of pages6
JournalThe Veterinary Journal
Early online date21 Jul 2018
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2018


  • Expert elicitation, Evidence base, Footrot treatment efficacy, Key players, Sheep