To compare IV doses of alfaxalone and ketamine needed to facilitate orotracheal intubation and assess effects of each treatment on selected physiologic variables in goats undergoing orthopedic surgery with isoflurane anesthesia.
18 healthy adult goats.
Behavior was assessed before and after sedation with midazolam (0.1 mg/kg, IV) for IV catheter placement. Anesthesia was induced with additional midazolam (0.1 mg/kg, IV) and alfaxalone (n = 9) or ketamine (9) at 2 mg/kg, IV, over 30 seconds. An additional dose of alfaxalone or ketamine (1 mg/kg) was given IV if needed for intubation; anesthesia was maintained with isoflurane in oxygen and IV fluids with ketamine (0.5 to 1 mg/kg/h). Direct systolic (SAP), diastolic (DAP), and mean (MAP) arterial blood pressures; heart rate; and respiratory rate were recorded before induction, immediately after intubation, and during surgery. Qualitative anesthetic induction and recovery characteristics were assessed. Variables were compared within and between groups by statistical methods.
No preinduction variables differed significantly between groups. Postintubation and 30-minute intraoperative SAP, DAP, and MAP were higher for the ketamine group than for the alfaxalone group; within the alfaxalone group, postintubation SAP, MAP, and respiratory rate prior to mechanical ventilation were lower than respective preinduction values. All alfaxalone-group goats were intubated after 1 dose of the induction agent; 5 of 9 ketamine-group goats required an additional (1-mg/kg) dose. Postoperative recovery was good to excellent for all animals.
CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE
Both drugs were suitable for induction of anesthesia after sedation with midazolam, but most goats required higher doses of ketamine to allow intubation. For situations in which alfaxalone administration is appropriate, the potential for decreased arterial blood pressures and respiratory rate should be considered.