The effects of multiple anaesthetic episodes on equine recovery quality.
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BACKGROUND: Although rare, 70% of equine fatalities during recovery from general anaesthesia (GA) are due to catastrophic fractures from poor recovery quality. OBJECTIVE: To determine the effect of repeated GA recovery on GA recovery quality. STUDY DESIGN: Experimental blinded trial. METHODS: Eight adult horses underwent six GA events on sevoflurane for distal limb MRI examination over a 14-week period. Prior to GA recovery, xylazine was administered. Randomly ordered video-recorded GA recoveries were scored by three blinded board certified veterinary anaesthesiologists, unaware of patient identity or GA event number, for nine parameters using a 100 mm visual analogue scale (VAS) where 0 = worst and 100 = best. The number of attempts to stand, duration of lateral and sternal recumbency, total recovery duration and physiologic parameters during each GA event were recorded. Repeated measures ANOVA were used to detect differences. Agreement between observer VAS scores was determined via inter-rater reliability using an intraclass correlation. RESULTS: With GA recovery experience, VAS scores for balance and coordination, knuckling, and overall quality of recovery were improved and the duration of lateral recumbency was increased. There were no differences in total recovery duration, number of attempts to stand, physiologic parameters other than heart rate during GA, or VAS scores for activity in lateral recumbency, move to sternal, move to stand, or strength. MAIN LIMITATIONS: Each GA event was relatively short and there was no surgical stimulation. The same results may not occur if there was surgical stimulation and pain during each GA event. CONCLUSION: Recovery from GA improves with multiple anaesthetic episodes in horses. Clinicians can advise clients that horses are likely to have better GA recovery on repeated GA recovery due to improved balance and coordination and reduced knuckling. Additionally, there is no change in anaesthetic morbidity with six repeated GA events over a 14-week period.
author list (cited authors)
Platt, J. P., Simon, B. T., Coleman, M., Martinez, E. A., Lepiz, M. A., & Watts, A. E.
complete list of authors
Platt, JP||Simon, BT||Coleman, M||Martinez, EA||Lepiz, MA||Watts, AE