Caudal vena cava to aorta ratio of dogs with spontaneous circulatory shock

The aim of this study was to describe the change in the caudal vena cava to aorta ratio (CVC:Ao) ratio during fluid resuscitation of circulatory shock in dogs and compare these results with those of the physical examination and blood lactate.

Perfusion parameters and blood lactate were recorded at admission. An abdominal point-of-care ultrasound protocol was performed, during which the caudal vena cava to aorta ratio was measured on the spleno-renal view. Measurements were performed within 5 minutes before and after a 10 mL/kg crystalloid fluid bolus. Investigators were not blinded to therapeutic interventions.

Twenty-nine dogs with physical signs of circulatory shock were enrolled. Caudal vena cava to aorta ratios were below reference interval in 28 of 29 dogs. After bolus administration, median caudal vena cava diameter increased by 0.14 cm (0.69 to 0.83 cm) and median aorta diameter increased by 0.03 cm (0.87 to 0.90 cm) and caudal vena cava to aorta ratio returned to within reference range in 65% of dogs (13/29). Bolus administration was associated with an increase in median caudal vena cava to aorta ratio of 0.10 (95% CI=0.05 to 0.16, P=0.0005). Blood lactate did not change significantly. Heart rate and capillary refill time decreased significantly after fluid bolus (heart rate: estimate=-19 bpm, 95% CI=-30 to -8, P=0.002; capillary refill time: estimate=-1.0 s, 95% CI=-1.3 to -0.7, P < 0.0001).

In conclusion, in this population of dogs with circulatory shock, the caudal vena cava to aorta ratio significantly increased after a fluid bolus. 

“Ultrasonographic measurement of caudal vena cava to aorta ratio during fluid resuscitation of dogs with spontaneous circulatory shock”. J Combet-Curt, et al. J Small Anim Pract. 2023 Jul 15.  doi: 10.1111/jsap.13654.


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