Pneumonia is one of the potential complications of general anaesthesia in horses. Anaesthesia is known to increase neutrophils in bronchoalveolar lavage fluid (BALF) of horses after lateral recumbency, but studies after dorsal recumbency are lacking. Our primary aim was to determine when lung inflammation reaches its maximum and how rapidly BALF cytology returns to baseline after anaesthesia in dorsal recumbency. A secondary aim was to investigate the possible effect of vatinoxan, a novel drug, on the BALF cytology results.
Six healthy experimental horses were enrolled in this observational crossover study. The horses were subject to repeated BALF and blood sampling for 7 days after general anaesthesia with two treatment protocols, and without anaesthesia (control). During the two treatments, the horses received either medetomidine-vatinoxan or medetomidine-placebo as premedication, and anaesthesia was induced with ketamine-midazolam and maintained with isoflurane for 1 h in dorsal recumbency. The differences in BALF and blood variables between the two anaesthesia protocols and control were analysed with repeated measures analysis of variance models.
In this study, anaesthesia in dorsal recumbency resulted in no clinically relevant changes in airway cytology that could be differentiated from the effect of repeated BALF sampling. No differences in BALF matrix metalloproteinase gelatinolytic activity could be detected between the two treatments or the control series. Marked increase in serum amyloid A was detected in some animals. Vatinoxan as premedication did not consistently affect lung cytology or blood inflammatory markers after anaesthesia. (C) 2019 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd.
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