Effects of a medetomidine-ketamine combination on Schirmer tear test I results of clinically normal cats

Simona Di Pietro Department of Veterinary Science, University of Messina, Polo Universitario Annunziata 98168 Messina, Italy.

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Francesco Macrì Department of Veterinary Science, University of Messina, Polo Universitario Annunziata 98168 Messina, Italy.

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Tiziana Bonarrigo Department of Veterinary Science, University of Messina, Polo Universitario Annunziata 98168 Messina, Italy.

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Elisabetta Giudice Department of Veterinary Science, University of Messina, Polo Universitario Annunziata 98168 Messina, Italy.

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Angela Palumbo Piccionello School of Veterinary Medical Sciences, University of Camerino, Via Circonvallazione 93-95, 62024 Matelica, Macerata, Italy.

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Antonio Pugliese Department of Veterinary Science, University of Messina, Polo Universitario Annunziata 98168 Messina, Italy.

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effects of a medetomidine-ketamine combination on tear production of clinically normal cats by use of the Schirmer tear test (STT) 1 before and during anesthesia and after reversal of medetomidine with atipamezole.

ANIMALS 40 client-owned crossbred domestic shorthair cats (23 males and 17 females; age range, 6 to 24 months).

PROCEDURES A complete physical examination, CBC, and ophthalmic examination were performed on each cat. Cats with no abnormalities on physical and ophthalmic examinations were included in the study. Cats were allocated into 2 groups: a control group (n = 10 cats) anesthetized by administration of a combination of medetomidine hydrochloride (80 μg/kg) and ketamine hydrochloride (5 mg/kg), and an experimental group (30) anesthetized with the medetomidine-ketamine combination and reversal by administration of atipamezole. Tear production of both eyes of each cat was measured by use of the STT I before anesthesia, 15 minutes after the beginning of anesthesia, and 15 minutes after administration of atipamezole.

RESULTS Anesthesia with a medetomidine-ketamine combination of cats with no ophthalmic disease caused a significant decrease in tear production. The STT I values returned nearly to preanesthetic values within 15 minutes after reversal with atipamezole, whereas the STT I values for the control group were still low at that point.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that a tear substitute should be administered to eyes of cats anesthetized with a medetomidine-ketamine combination from the time of anesthetic administration until at least 15 minutes after administration of atipamezole.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To evaluate the effects of a medetomidine-ketamine combination on tear production of clinically normal cats by use of the Schirmer tear test (STT) 1 before and during anesthesia and after reversal of medetomidine with atipamezole.

ANIMALS 40 client-owned crossbred domestic shorthair cats (23 males and 17 females; age range, 6 to 24 months).

PROCEDURES A complete physical examination, CBC, and ophthalmic examination were performed on each cat. Cats with no abnormalities on physical and ophthalmic examinations were included in the study. Cats were allocated into 2 groups: a control group (n = 10 cats) anesthetized by administration of a combination of medetomidine hydrochloride (80 μg/kg) and ketamine hydrochloride (5 mg/kg), and an experimental group (30) anesthetized with the medetomidine-ketamine combination and reversal by administration of atipamezole. Tear production of both eyes of each cat was measured by use of the STT I before anesthesia, 15 minutes after the beginning of anesthesia, and 15 minutes after administration of atipamezole.

RESULTS Anesthesia with a medetomidine-ketamine combination of cats with no ophthalmic disease caused a significant decrease in tear production. The STT I values returned nearly to preanesthetic values within 15 minutes after reversal with atipamezole, whereas the STT I values for the control group were still low at that point.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that a tear substitute should be administered to eyes of cats anesthetized with a medetomidine-ketamine combination from the time of anesthetic administration until at least 15 minutes after administration of atipamezole.

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