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Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate efficacy and safety of anesthesia with dexmedetomidine-ketamine-midazolam (DKM) in five-striped palm squirrels (Funambulus pennantii).

ANIMALS

8 male squirrels.

PROCEDURES

Squirrels were anesthetized with DKM (dexmedetomidine, 0.1 mg/kg; ketamine hydrochloride, 30 mg/kg; and midazolam, 0.75 mg/kg) administered IM. Atipamezole (0.15 mg/kg) and flumazenil (0.1 mg/kg) were administered IM 40 minutes after induction of anesthesia. Vital signs and responses were recorded every 5 minutes during anesthesia.

RESULTS

Anesthetic induction and recovery from anesthesia were rapid and without complications in all squirrels. Median anesthetic induction time was 67.5 seconds (interquartile [25th to 75th percentile] range, 5.5 seconds), and mean ± SD recovery time after drug reversal was 147 ± 79 seconds. Heart rate, respiratory rate, and rectal temperature significantly decreased during the anesthetic period. All squirrels became hypothermic by 40 minutes after induction. The righting reflex was absent during the 40-minute anesthetic period in all squirrels, with variable responses for the palpebral reflex, jaw tone, forelimb withdrawal reflex, and hind limb withdrawal reflex. Only 2 of 8 squirrels had loss of the limb withdrawal reflex in both the forelimbs and hind limbs from anesthetic induction to 25 minutes after induction.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

DKM appeared to provide safe and effective anesthesia in five-striped palm squirrels, but oxygen and thermal support were indicated. At the doses administered, deep surgical anesthesia was not consistently achieved, and anesthetic depth of individual squirrels must be determined before surgical procedures are performed in palm squirrels anesthetized with this drug combination.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To determine the association between urine osmolality and specific gravity (USG) in dogs and to evaluate the effect of commonly measured urine solutes on that association.

Animals—60 dogs evaluated by an internal medicine service.

Procedures—From each dog, urine was obtained by cystocentesis and USG was determined with a refractometer. The sample was divided, and one aliquot was sent to a diagnostic laboratory for urinalysis and the other was frozen at −80°C until osmolality was determined. Urine samples were thawed and osmolality was measured in duplicate with a freezing-point depression osmometer. The correlation between mean urine osmolality and USG was determined; the effect of pH, proteinuria, glucosuria, ketonuria, bilirubinuria, and hemoglobinuria on this relationship was investigated with multiple regression analysis.

Results—The Pearson correlation coefficient between urine osmolality and USG was 0.87. The final multivariable regression model for urine osmolality included USG and the presence of ketones; ketonuria had a small negative association with urine osmolality.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Results indicated a strong linear correlation between osmolality and USG in urine samples obtained from dogs with various pathological conditions, and ketonuria had a small negative effect on that correlation.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To evaluate the effects of a dexmedetomidine-midazolam-ketamine (DMK) combination administered IM to captive red-footed tortoises (Chelonoidis carbonaria).

ANIMALS

12 healthy adult red-footed tortoises.

PROCEDURES

In a prospective experimental study, DMK (0.1, 1.0, and 10 mg/kg, respectively) was administered IM as separate injections into the right antebrachium. Atipamezole (0.5 mg/kg, IM) and flumazenil (0.05 mg/kg, SC) were administered into the left antebrachium 60 minutes later. Times to the first treatment response and maximal treatment effect after DMK administration and time to recovery after reversal agent administration were recorded. Vital signs and reflexes or responses to stimuli were assessed and recorded at predetermined intervals.

RESULTS

DMK treatment produced deep sedation or light anesthesia for ≥ 20 minutes in all tortoises. Induction and recovery were rapid, with no complications noted. Median times to first response, maximum effect, and recovery were 4.5, 35, and 14.5 minutes, respectively. Two tortoises required additional reversal agent administration but recovered < 20 minutes after the repeated injections. Mean heart and respiratory rates decreased significantly over time. All animals lost muscle tone in the neck and limbs from 35 to 55 minutes after DMK injection, but other variables including palpebral reflexes, responses to mild noxious stimuli (eg, toe pinching, tail pinching, and saline ([0.9 NaCl] solution injection), and ability to intubate were inconsistent.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

DMK administration produced deep sedation or light anesthesia with no adverse effects in healthy adult red-footed tortoises. At the doses administered, deep surgical anesthesia was not consistently achieved. Anesthetic depth must be carefully evaluated before performing painful procedures in red-footed tortoises with this DMK protocol.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare intraoperative and short-term postoperative variables pertaining to laparoscopic ovariectomy (LapOVE) and open ovariectomy (OVE) in rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus).

ANIMALS

Twelve 4− to 5-month-old female New Zealand White rabbits.

PROCEDURES

Rabbits were randomly assigned to undergo LapOVE (n = 6) or OVE (6), with a vessel-sealing device used to seal and transect the ovarian pedicles. Laparoscopic ovariectomy was performed with a 3-port approach. Variables were measured during surgery (surgery and anesthesia times and incision lengths) and for up to 7 days after surgery (food consumption, feces production, body weight, vital parameters, blood glucose and cortisol concentrations, abdominal palpation findings, facial grimace scale scores, and ethograms).

RESULTS

Mean surgery (43.2 vs 21.7 minutes) and anesthesia (76.2 vs 48.8 minutes) times were longer and mean incision length was shorter (24.0 vs 41.5 mm) for LapOVE versus OVE. No significant differences in postoperative variables were identified between groups. During LapOVE, small intestinal perforation occurred in 1 rabbit, which was then euthanized. Postoperative complications for the remaining rabbits included superficial incisional dehiscence (LapOVE, 1/5; OVE, 2/6), subcutaneous emphysema (LapOVE, 1/5; OVE, 0/6), and seroma formation (LapOVE, 1/5; OVE, 0/6).

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Surgery time for LapOVE was twice that of OVE, and LapOVE resulted in unique complications in rabbits. No evidence of a reduction in pain or faster return to baseline physiologic status was found for LapOVE. Further evaluation of LapOVE in rabbits is warranted, with modification to techniques used in this study or a larger sample size.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE To investigate effects of storage duration and temperature on biochemical analytes in plasma from red-eared sliders (Trachemys scripta elegans).

ANIMALS 8 red-eared sliders.

PROCEDURES Blood samples were collected. Plasma was harvested and analyzed at room temperature (approx 23°C; time = 1 hour) and then fractioned into 0.1-mL aliquots that were stored at room temperature or were refrigerated (4°C) or frozen (−20°C). Biochemical analysis of stored samples was performed at 4 (room temperature), 8 (4°C), 24 (4°C), 48 (4° and −20°C), and 72 (−20°C) hours and at 7 days (−20°C). For each time point for each storage temperature, bias was calculated by subtracting values from the value obtained at 1 hour. Bias was modeled by use of a linear mixed model.

RESULTS Storage temperature had a significant effect on several plasma biochemical analytes. In general, aspartate aminotransferase activity and uric acid, total protein, and potassium concentrations increased after storage at 4° and −20°C. Differences in values after storage were mostly within the acceptable range for allowable total error, except for calcium and potassium concentrations for samples stored at −20°C. Both storage temperatures increased variability of measurement results. Results for samples stored at room temperature for 4 hours did not differ significantly from values at 1 hour. Results differed significantly between refrigerated and frozen samples stored for 48 hours.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE Short-term storage conditions influenced results for some biochemical analytes. These effects should be considered when performing biochemical analyses of plasma samples obtained from red-eared sliders.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare anesthetic effects of alfaxalone-ketamine-dexmedetomidine (AKD) and alfaxalone-butorphanol-midazolam (ABM) in naked mole-rats (Heterocephalus glaber).

ANIMALS

20 naked mole-rats.

PROCEDURES

Naked mole-rats received AKD (alfaxalone, 2 mg/kg; ketamine, 20 mg/kg; and dexmedetomidine, 0.02 mg/kg; n = 10) or ABM (alfaxalone, 2 mg/kg; butorphanol, 2 mg/kg; and midazolam, 1 mg/kg; 9) IM; 1 animal was removed from the study. Atipamezole (I mg/kg) and flumazenil (0.1 mg/kg) were administered 40 minutes after anesthetic induction (defined as loss of the righting reflex) with AKD and ABM, respectively. Heart rate, respiratory rate, oxygen saturation, and reflexes were recorded every 5 minutes.

RESULTS

The ABM group had significantly longer median times for induction and recovery than the AKD group. Administration of ABM resulted in significantly lower respiratory rates than administration of AKD from time of anesthetic induction to 10 minutes after induction. Respiratory rate significantly decreased in the AKD group from I0 minutes after induction through the end of the anesthetic period but did not change over time in the ABM group. Males had higher respiratory rates in both groups. Loss of the righting reflex was still evident 40 minutes after induction in both groups. In the AKD group, all tested reflexes were absent from I0 to 40 minutes after induction; the ABM group had variable reflexes that recovered within individual animals over time.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

Both AKD and ABM provided effective immobilization in naked mole-rats, but AKD appeared to provide more consistent and deeper anesthesia, compared with administration of ABM.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

Objective—To evaluate physical methods for inducing death during the slaughter of American alligators (Alligator mississippiensis).

Animals—24 captive hatched-and-reared American alligators.

Procedures—Baseline electroencephalograms (EEGs) were obtained for awake and anesthetized alligators. Corneal reflex, spontaneous blinking, and EEGs were evaluated after severance of the spinal cord, severance of the spinal cord followed by pithing of the brain, application of a penetrating captive bolt, or application of a nonpenetrating captive bolt (6 alligators/group).

Results—Overall, alligators subjected to spinal cord severance alone differed from those subjected to the other techniques. Spinal cord severance alone resulted in postprocedure EEG power values greater than those in anesthetized alligators, whereas the postprocedure EEG power values were isoelectric for the other 3 techniques. Corneal reflex and spontaneous blinking were absent in all alligators immediately after application of a penetrating or nonpenetrating captive bolt. One of 6 alligators had a corneal reflex up to 1 minute after pithing, but all others within that group had immediate cessation of reflexes after pithing. Mean time to loss of spontaneous blinking and corneal reflex for alligators subjected to spinal cord severance alone was 18 minutes (range, 2 to 37 minutes) and 54 minutes (range, 34 to 99 minutes), respectively.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—Spinal cord severance followed by pithing of the brain and application of a penetrating or nonpenetrating captive bolt appeared to be humane and effective techniques for inducing death in American alligators, whereas spinal cord severance alone was not found to be an appropriate method.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To assess the effects of 3 intra-abdominal pressures (IAPs) on pneumoperitoneal (laparoscopic working space) volume in domestic rabbits (Oryctolagus cuniculus).

ANIMALS

6 female New Zealand White rabbits.

PROCEDURES

A Latin-square design was used to randomly allocate sequences of 3 IAPs (4, 8, and 12 mm Hg) to each rabbit in a crossover study. Rabbits were anesthetized, subumbilical cannulae were placed, and CT scans were performed to obtain baseline measurements. Each IAP was achieved with CO2 insufflation and maintained for ≥ 15 minutes; CT scans were performed with rabbits in dorsal, left lateral oblique, and right lateral oblique recumbency. The abdomen was desufflated for 5 minutes between treatments (the 3 IAPs). Pneumoperitoneal volumes were calculated from CT measurements with 3-D medical imaging software. Mixed linear regression models evaluated effects of IAP, rabbit position, and treatment order on working space volume.

RESULTS

Mean working space volume at an IAP of 8 mm Hg was significantly greater (a 19% increase) than that at 4 mm Hg, and was significantly greater (a 6.9% increase) at 12 mm Hg than that at 8 mm Hg. Treatment order, but not rabbit position, also had a significant effect on working space. Minor adverse effects reported in other species were observed in some rabbits.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

A nonlinear increase in abdominal working space was observed with increasing IAP. Depending on the type of procedure and visual access requirements, IAPs > 8 mm Hg may not provide a clinically important benefit for laparoscopy in rabbits.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To describe a retroesophagoscopic approach (ROSA) to nasopharyngoscopy and compare it with the conventional retroflexed endoscopic approach (REA).

ANIMALS

36 feline cadavers and 2 client-owned cats with nasopharyngeal disorders.

PROCEDURES

36 veterinarians participated in the experimental portion of the study involving feline cadavers. Each veterinarian performed the ROSA and REA to nasopharyngoscopy on a feline cadaver once, attempting to identify and biopsy 2 landmarks (soft palate and choanae) with each approach while time was recorded. Numeric scales were used to measure perceived ease of use and image quality for both techniques. Data were compared between approaches by an independent statistician. The ROSA approach was also used as part of the diagnostic workup for the 2 client-owned cats.

RESULTS

35 of the 36 (97%) veterinarians were able to identify and biopsy both landmarks using the ROSA, whereas 21 (58%) veterinarians were able to visualize both landmarks using the REA and 19 (53%) successfully biopsied the landmarks. Image quality for the soft palate was scored higher with the ROSA (median score, 7.5/10) than with the REA (4.5/10). The ROSA was fast and easy to perform. This approach was also successfully performed in the 2 client-owned cats with nasopharyngeal disorders, with no complications reported.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

The ROSA was found to be a fast, effective, and easy alternative endoscopic technique for assessment of the nasopharynx in cats. This approach may allow use of various instruments that could be relevant for interventional procedures. However, the ROSA was also invasive and should be considered for diagnostic and therapeutic purposes for selected indications only when REA is unsuccessful. (Am J Vet Res 2021;82:752–759)

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research

Abstract

OBJECTIVE

To compare the effects of a dexmedetomidine-ketamine-midazolam (DKM) anesthetic protocol versus isoflurane inhalation anesthesia on echocardiographic variables and plasma cardiac troponin 1 (cTnI) concentration in black-tailed prairie dogs (BTPDs; Cynomys ludovicianus).

ANIMALS

Nine 6-month-old sexually intact male captive BTPDs.

PROCEDURES

Each BTPD was randomly assigned to be anesthetized by IM administration of dexmedetomidine (0.25 mg/kg), ketamine (40 mg/kg), and midazolam (1.5 mg/kg) or via inhalation of isoflurane and oxygen. Three days later, each BTPD underwent the alternative anesthetic protocol. Echocardiographic data and a blood sample were collected within 5 minutes after initiation and just prior to cessation of each 45-minute-long anesthetic episode.

RESULTS

Time or anesthetic protocol had no significant effect on echocardiographic variables. For either protocol, plasma cTnI concentration did not differ with time. When administered as the first treatment, neither anesthetic protocol significantly affected plasma cTnI concentration. However, with regard to findings for the second treatments, plasma cTnI concentrations in isoflurane-treated BTPDs (n = 4; data for 1 animal were not analyzed because of procedural problems) were higher than values in DKM-treated BTPDs (4), which was suspected to be a carryover effect from prior DKM treatment.

CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE

The DKM and isoflurane anesthetic protocols did not have any significant effect on echocardiographic measurements in the BTPDs. Increases in plasma cTnI concentration during the second anesthetic episode were evident when BTPDs underwent the DKM anesthetic protocol as the first of the 2 treatments, suggestive of potential myocardial injury associated with that anesthetic protocol. Clinicians should consider these findings, especially when evaluating BTPDs with known or suspected cardiac disease.

Full access
in American Journal of Veterinary Research