Measurement of the systemic arterial blood pressure in dogs is technically more difficult than in humans. Even though the direct (invasive) technique yields the most exact measurements, it is too complicated for routine clinical use. Indirect (non-invasive) techniques (oscillometric, photopletysmography and Doppler ultrasound methods) on the other hand can be suggested for use by veterinary practitioners. Whereas oscillometric devices can detect systolic, mean and diastolic arterial pressure, Doppler ultrasound instruments are useful for detecting only the systolic value. The photopletysmograph is able to detect both systolic and diastolic values, but only in small dogs. The authors describe how to use the Doppler ultrasound technique to measure arterial blood pressure in dogs. The cuff, of which three sizes are normally used, should be applied to either the tail or the distal part of the radius and ulna. The physiological value of systemic arterial blood pressure in canines varies strongly with many factors, such as age, breed, sex, temperament, body weight, etc., even in healthy dogs. This makes the interpretation of results of animals suffering from various diseases more difficult. Hypotension caused by dehydration can be estimated on the basis of physical examination, but hypertension can only be diagnosed after several blood pressure measurements of high values. Whereas primary (idiopathic) hypertension is very rare in dogs, secondary hypertension is generally caused by one of the following diseases: renal, liver diseases, Cushing-disease, hypo- and hyperthyreosis. Hypertension can cause renal, cerebrovascular and ophthalmologic disorders, so it is important to treat the underlying disease as well as the hypertension itself. As a first step, the sodium intake of the dog should be reduced. If blood pressure does not return to normal, ACE-inhibitors (e.g. enalapril) alone or combined with diuretics (e.g. furosemid) can be used to correct hypertension. Blood pressure measurement can be an important tool in the hand of a clinician during the diagnostic procedure as well as to monitor the effects of vasodilator treatment in patients suffering from congestive heart failure.
|Number of pages||8|
|Journal||Magyar Allatorvosok Lapja|
|Publication status||Published - Dec 1 1998|
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