Lower than expected arterial oxygen tension (PaO2) continues to be an unresolved problem in equine anesthesia. The aim of this randomized, crossover, and prospective study using six adult horses is to determine if a 15° reverse Trendelenburg position (RTP) increases PaO2 during inhalation anesthesia. Under constant-dose isoflurane anesthesia, dorsally recumbent horses were positioned either horizontally (HP) or in a 15° RTP for 2 h. Lungs were mechanically ventilated (15 mL/kg, 6 breaths/min). Arterial carbon dioxide tension (PaCO2), PaO2, inspired oxygen fraction (FiO2), and end-tidal carbon dioxide tension (EtCO2) were determined every 30 min during anesthesia. Indices of dead-space ventilation (Vd/Vt), oxygenation (P–F ratio), and perfusion (F–shunt) were calculated. Dobutamine and phenylephrine were used to support mean arterial pressure (MAP). Data are presented as median and range. In one horse, which was deemed an outlier due to its thoracic dimensions and body conformation, indices of oxygenation worsened in RTP compared to HP (median PaO2 438 vs. 568 mmHg; P–F ratio 454 vs. 586 mmHg, and F–shunt 13.0 vs. 5.7 mmHg). This horse was excluded from calculations. In the remaining five horses they were significantly better with RTP compared to HP. Results in remaining five horses showed that PaO2 (502, 467–575 vs. 437, 395–445 mmHg), P-F ratio (518, 484–598 vs. 455, 407–458 mmHg), and F-shunt (10.1, 4.2–11.7 vs. 14.2, 13.8–16.0 mmHg) were significantly different between RTP and HP (p = 0.03). Other variables were not significantly different. In conclusion, the 15° RTP resulted in better oxygenation than HP in dorsally recumbent, isoflurane-anesthetized horses, although worsening of oxygenation may occur in individual horses. A study detailing the cardiovascular consequences of RTP is necessary before it can be recommended for clinical practice.
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- Dorsal recumbency
- General anesthesia
- Intrapulmonary shunt
- Junctional escapecapture bigeminy
PubMed: MeSH publication types
- Journal Article