Clinical utility of a targeted smartphone application to aid veterinary students in calculating constant rate infusions and perioperative fluid drip rates. Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND: To compare the utility of a targeted smartphone application (TSPA) with a non-programmable calculator (NPC) when calculating fluid drip rates (FDR) and constant rate infusions (CRIs). METHODS: In a prospective randomised clinical study, 48 fourth-year veterinary students entered one of four parallel groups involving two mock scenarios: fentanyl calculation using an NPC followed by lidocaine calculation using a TSPA, fentanyl (TSPA) followed by lidocaine (NPC), lidocaine (NPC) followed by fentanyl (TSPA) or lidocaine (TSPA) followed by fentanyl (NPC). Students calculated volume of drug added to maintenance fluids and drops/second that correctly administered the drug dose and FDR. Time to completion was assessed using an analysis of variance. A Fisher's exact test assessed the effect of study period, scenario and device in the proportion of correct/incorrect answers. RESULTS: Participants took longer to complete the scenarios in period 1 and 2 with the NPC (380.7195.6seconds and 488154.8seconds, respectively) than the TSPA (247.588.8seconds and 22494.2seconds, respectively) (P<0.0031and P<0.0001). Participants were more likely to complete the scenarios incorrectly with the NPC (n=32) when compared with the TSPA (n=7) (P<0.0001). CONCLUSIONS: TSPAs are more efficient and accurate when calculating CRIs and FDR compared with conventional methods. Medical mathematics must be emphasised during the veterinary curriculum.

published proceedings

  • Vet Rec

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • White, J. F., Scallan, E. M., Lizarraga, I., & Simon, B. T.

citation count

  • 0

complete list of authors

  • White, Joel F||Scallan, Elizabeth M||Lizarraga, Ignacio||Simon, Bradley T

publication date

  • January 2020