|Twenty-four beagle dogs, 1.1 Â± 0.3 years of age and weighing 10.9 Â± 2.7 kg, were included in the study.
Dogs were allocated to receive one of four anesthetic protocols: 1 - pre-medication with acepromazine and butorphanol, induction with thiopental; 2 - pre-medication with acepromazine and butorphanol, induction with propofol; 3 - pre-medication with medetomidine and butorphanol, induction with propofol; and 4 - pre-medication with medetomidine and butorphanol, induction with ketamine and diazepam. Anesthesia was then maintained with halothane.
At laparotomy, the spleen length, width, and height were measured, these were measured again just prior to closure of the abdomen. Splenic area and volume were calculated. Hematocrit and total serum protein (TSP) were measured before and after induction and during laparotomy.
Splenic volume was greatest after protocol 4 (161.2 Â± 40.2 cm3; p< 0.05) and was least after protocol 2. The differences in volume were because of differences in length, width, and height between groups.
There was no significant change in area, length, or width over the study period.
Hematocrit decreased significantly in all dogs but at different times.
The decrease occurred after pre-medication if acepromazine was administered, at induction following protocol 3 and during surgery following protocol 4.
If splenic volume is to be minimized during surgery, then acepromazine and propofol should be used in the anesthetic protocol.
The administration of medetomidine, diazepam, and ketamine will produce a greater splenic volume.
Lack of correlation between hematocrit and spleen size following the anesthetic protocols studied suggests sequestration of red blood cells in nonsplenic sites.
Source: Wilson, Deborah V, Evans, A Thomas, E, Rachael & Mullineaux, David R (2004): The effect of four anesthetic protocols on splenic size in dogs. In: Veterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia 31 (2), 102-108.
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