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  • Author or Editor: Alice M. Defarges x
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OBJECTIVE To compare bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) accomplished by use of a bronchoscopic (B-BAL) and a nonbronchoscopic (NB-BAL) technique in healthy cats.

ANIMALS 12 healthy cats.

PROCEDURES Two BALs were performed in a randomized order 2 weeks apart in each cat. Cats were anesthetized, and a 2.9-mm fiberoptic bronchoscope (B-BAL) or 8F red rubber catheter (NB-BAL) was wedged in a bronchus. Two 5-mL aliquots of saline (0.9% NaCl) solution were infused into the left and right caudal lung fields and aspirated manually with a 20-mL syringe. Proportion of BAL fluid (BALF) retrieved, depth of wedging, and anesthetic complications were recorded. Total nucleated cell count, differential cell count, and semiquantitative scores of cytologic slide quality were determined for all BALF samples. Results were compared with ANOVAs and Wilcoxon signed rank tests.

RESULTS Proportion of retrieved BALF and depth of wedging were significantly greater for B-BAL than NB-BAL. Differential cell counts and cytologic slide quality did not differ significantly between techniques. Complications included transient hemoglobin desaturation (24/24 [100%] BALs) and prolonged anesthetic recovery time (4/24 [17%] BALs). Anesthetic recovery scores did not differ significantly between techniques.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Results indicated that NB-BAL was noninferior to B-BAL with regard to ease of performance, anesthetic variables, and cytologic slide quality for cats without clinical respiratory tract disease.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research


Objective—To compare bronchoalveolar lavage (BAL) fluid obtained by manual aspiration (MA) with a handheld syringe with that obtained by suction pump aspiration (SPA) in healthy dogs.

Animals—13 adult Beagles.

Procedures—Each dog was anesthetized and bronchoscopic BAL was performed. The MA technique was accomplished with a 35-mL syringe attached to the bronchoscope biopsy channel. The SPA technique was achieved with negative pressure (5 kPa) applied to the bronchoscope suction valve with a disposable suction trap. Both aspiration techniques were performed in each dog in randomized order on opposite caudal lung lobes. Two 1 mL/kg aliquots of warm saline (0.9% NaCl) solution were infused per site. For each BAL fluid sample, the percentage of retrieved fluid was calculated, the total nucleated cell count (TNCC) and differential cell count were determined, and semiquantitative assessment of slide quality was performed. Comparisons were made between MA and SPA techniques for each outcome.

Results—1 dog was removed from the study because of illness. The mean percentage of fluid retrieved (mean difference, 23%) and median TNCC (median distribution of differences, 100 cells/μL) for samples obtained by SPA were significantly greater than those for samples obtained by MA.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—In healthy dogs, BAL by SPA resulted in a significantly higher percentage of fluid retrieval and samples with a higher TNCC than did MA. Further evaluation of aspiration techniques in dogs with respiratory tract disease is required to assess whether SPA improves the diagnostic yield of BAL samples.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research