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Critically ill cats and their alterations in carbohydrate metabolism
It is well known that cats with severe diseases tend to develop potentially life-threatening alterations in their carbohydrate metabolism, related to the development of hyperglycemia. But what happens exactly? This recently published study gives very interesting informations - cats react like humans!

Twenty-six non-diabetic cats admitted into the intensive care unit for a variety of diseases and 21 healthy control cats were included in this prospective, observational, controlled study at the Intensive care unit at a university veterinary teaching hospital.

Blood samples were obtained from critically ill cats upon admission to the intensive care unit. Blood was similarly obtained from control cats.

Measurements and main results: For all cats, venous blood glucose, lactate, cortisol, insulin, glucagon, epinephrine, norepinephrine, and non-esterified fatty acid concentrations were determined and compared between the 2 groups of cats.

Compared with controls, critically ill cats had significantly higher median concentrations of glucose [183 (range 51–321) mg/dL versus 110 (91–165) mg/dL; P<0.001], lactate [2.5 (0.6–11.1) mmol/L versus 1.8 (0.4–4.1) mmol/L; P=0.01], cortisol [7.8 (0.3–53.7) ìg/dL versus 4.4 (1.5–8.3) ìg/dL; P=0.005], glucagon [186 (46–3128) pg/mL versus 97 (30–252) pg/mL; P=0.001], and norepinephrine [1.5 (0.2–16.4) pg/mL versus 0.63 (0.21–3.61) pg/mL; P=0.003].

Compared with controls, critically ill cats also had a significantly lower median plasma insulin concentration [9 (2–52) ìU/mL versus 17 (3–35) ìU/mL; P=0.04].

The presence or degree of hyperglycemia in critically ill cats was not related to any single measured variable.

Conclusions: Similar to critically ill human patients, alterations in carbohydrate metabolism are present in critically ill cats and likely contribute to the hyperglycemia commonly observed in this population.



Source: Chan, Daniel L., Freeman, Lisa M., Rozanski, Elizabeth A. & Rush, John E. (2006): Alterations in carbohydrate metabolism in critically ill cats. In: Journal of Veterinary Emergency and Critical Care 16 (s1), S7-S13.




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SMALL ANIMAL PRACTICE

Reference intervals for blood parameters in Shetland Sheepdogsmembers
Several breeds have physiological peculiarities that induce variations in reference intervals (RIs) compared with the general canine population. Shetland sheepdogs (SSs) are reported to be more predisposed to different diseases (eg, hyperlipidemia, gallbladder mucocele, and hypothyroidism). Consequently, a breed‐specific approach is more often required. Thus, the aim of this study was to determine whether the RIs of the general canine population could be applied to that of SSs, and to generate breed‐specific RIs, where appropriate.

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