Objective—To compare β-hydroxybutyrate (BHB) and glucose concentrations measured with a dual-purpose point-of-care (POC) meter designed for use in humans and a laboratory biochemical analyzer (LBA) to determine whether the POC meter would be reliable for on-farm measurement of blood glucose and BHB concentrations in sheep in various environmental conditions and nutritional states.
Animals—36 pregnant mixed-breed ewes involved in a maternal feed restriction study.
Procedures—Blood samples were collected from each sheep at multiple points throughout gestation and lactation to allow for tracking of gradually increasing metabolic hardship. Whole blood glucose and BHB concentrations were measured with the POC meter and compared with serum results obtained with an LBA.
Results—464 samples were collected. Whole blood BHB concentrations measured with the POC meter compared well with LBA results, and error grid analysis showed the POC values were acceptable. Whole blood glucose concentrations measured with the POC meter had more variation, compared with LBA values, over the glucose ranges evaluated. Results of error grid analysis of POC-measured glucose concentrations were not acceptable, indicating errors likely to result in needless treatment with glucose or other supplemental energy sources in normoglycemic sheep.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The POC meter was user-friendly and performed well across a wide range of conditions. The meter was adequate for detection of pregnancy toxemia in sheep via whole blood BHB concentration. Results should be interpreted with caution when the POC meter is used to measure blood glucose concentrations.