This study aimed to evaluate the safety and feasibility of intranasal administration of dexmedetomidine as a premedication for preventing hypotension and hypothermia in canine patients undergoing MRI examinations.
Dogs undergoing MRI examinations for neurological disorders were enrolled in this study. The dogs were randomly assigned: 15 to the N-Dex group (without premedication) and 13 to the Dex group (125 μg/m2 of dexmedetomidine, intranasally, as a premedication).
During the examination, pulse rate, systolic blood pressure, diastolic blood pressure, and mean arterial blood pressure were recorded every 5 minutes for the first 30 minutes. Body temperature was measured before and after the examination. Any adverse events during the procedure were documented.
Significant changes in pulse rate during the examination were not distinguishable. Although blood pressure and body temperature decreased in both groups under anesthesia, dogs in the Dex group had a significantly smaller drop in blood pressure and body temperature and fewer hypotension events than those in the N-Dex group MRI examinations of 1 hour’s duration. Two dogs in the Dex group exhibited bradycardia at 45 and 60 minutes of MRI examination, which resolved after receiving atipamezole.
Our results indicate that intranasal administration of 125 μg/m2 of dexmedetomidine as premedication is safe and can potentially mitigate hypothermia and hypotension in dogs with neurological disorders during MRI examinations.