Desflurane is a potent inhaled anesthetic with a blood:gas partition coefficient of 0.42, which is substantially lower than that of isoflurane (1.46), making it an attractive choice to provide rapid induction into and rapid emergence from general anesthesia.1 Inhalant anesthetics capable of providing general anesthesia when administered alone are often referred to as potent to differentiate them from nitrous oxide. Although desflurane is referred to as a potent inhalant anesthetic (as is isoflurane), the higher MAC value of desflurane, compared with other commonly administered inhalant anesthetics, makes it the least potent of the so-called potent inhalant anesthetics. Identical in structure to isoflurane with the exception of substitution of a fluorine atom for a chlorine atom, desflurane has cardiovascular effects similar to those of isoflurane and undergoes less biotransformation.2 Since its introduction into clinical practice in the 1990s, desflurane has been used for anesthesia in large3 and small animal species.4 Calves are frequently used as experimental animals and are often anesthetized with inhalant anesthetics to permit surgical or other painful procedures. Use of an inhalant anesthetic with a rapid onset and recovery, cardiovascular stability, and high resistance to biodegradation would be advantageous in many studies. To the authors’ knowledge, use of desflurane as the sole anesthetic for calves has not been reported. The purpose of the study reported here was to evaluate the cardiovascular effects of mask induction and subsequent maintenance of anesthesia with desflurane in oxygen administered to calves 8 to 12 weeks of age. We hypothesized that a plane of desflurane-induced anesthesia that permitted placement of cardiac catheters would decrease arterial pressure but maintain cardiac index, compared with baseline values recorded while the calves were awakening.
Minimum alveolar concentration
Systemic vascular resistance
Pulmonary vascular resistance
End-tidal desflurane concentration
End-tidal carbon dioxide tension
Pulmonary arterial pressure
Suprane, Baxter, Deerfield, Ill.
Tech 6 anesthetic vaporizer, Ohmeda, West Yorkshire, England.
Narkomed AVE, North American Drager Co, Telford, Pa.
Rascal II Ohmeda, Division of BOC Health Care, Salt Lake City, Utah.
Abbocath, 20 SWG, 5 cm, Abbott Laboratories, North Chicago, Ill.
Elecath, 7 F, 110 cm, Electrocatheter Corp, Rahway, NJ.
Transpac II, Abbott Critical Care Systems, North Chicago, Ill.
HP M1006B pressure module, Hewlett-Packard Co, Andover, Mass.
HP M1175A anesthesia component monitoring system, Hewlett-Packard Co, Andover, Mass.
HP M1012A cardiac output module, Hewlett-Packard Co, Andover, Mass.
ABL 2, Radiometer, Copenhagen, Denmark.
NCSS 2000, NCSS, Kaysville, Utah.
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