Catheterization of the auricular vein in cattle: 68 cases (1991-1994).
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OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the use of auricular vein catheters (AVC) in cattle in a clinical setting. DESIGN: Case series. ANIMALS: 57 cattle. PROCEDURE: 68 AVC were placed in cattle for the administration of drugs or rehydration fluids. Catheter size, quantity of fluids administered, duration of administration, drugs administered, duration of catheter maintenance, and problems were recorded. RESULTS: The AVC ranged in size from 20 to 14 gauge, with the latter being the predominate size. A maximum flow rate of 7.7 L/h was achieved, and the flow rate was satisfactory in all but 1 case. The maximum duration of maintenance was > 96 hours. Problems occurred in 29 of 68 (43%) catheterizations; the most frequent problem was occlusion of the catheter, which occurred 16 times (24%). No serious complications occurred. CLINICAL IMPLICATIONS: Auricular vein catheters were a convenient, safe, and low-cost alternative to jugular vein catheters.