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Oxyglobin Use in Cats

Weingart, C. and B. Kohn (2008). “Clinical use of a haemoglobin-based oxygen carrying solution (Oxyglobin®) in 48 cats (2002-2006).” Journal of Feline Medicine & Surgery 10(5): 431-438.

Blood transfusions are an important component of critical care for anemia in cats, and may be required for various reasons, such as hemolysis or blood loss. While safe and effective, blood transfusions are labour-intensive, requiring typing and cross-matching of donor and recipient. Oxyglobin® (Biopure Corp) is a chemically stabilized hemoglobin in a balanced salt solution intended for intravenous use. It is licensed for treatment of anemia in dogs. Administration of Oxyglobin is less time-consuming than blood transfusion, and the solution can be stored for years, unlike blood products. There is minimal risk of transmission of infectious diseases. While numerous studies have been published on the use of Oxyglobin in dogs, there is little in the veterinary literature regarding the use of the product in cats. The objective of this study was to evaluate Oxyglobin infusions administered to cats between November 2002 and December 2006 at the Clinic for Small Animals of the Free University of Berlin regarding indication, number of infusions, infusion volume, side effects, and survival rate. During the study period, 48 cats received 65 Oxyglobin transfusions. Administration of Oxyglobin efficiently increased the hemoglobin concentration in the majority of tranfusions. However, severe side effects were noted in seven cats with cardiac disease, such as pulmonary edema, pleural effusion, and respiratory distress. Four of the seven cats received whole blood transfusions on the same day; five cats died and one was euthanized. Overall 24-hour survival rate was 77%. The researchers concluded that Oxyglobin is efficient and safe for treatment of anemia in cats, but the volume and rate of the infusion have to be carefully adjusted to the patient. Oxyglobin should be given very cautiously to cats with cardiac (or respiratory) diseases.
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Related articles:
Callan, M. B. and V. T. Rentko (2003). “Clinical application of a hemoglobin-based oxygen-carrying solution.” Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 33(6): 1277-93, vi.
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Gibson, G., M. Callan, et al. (2002). “Use of a hemoglobin-based oxygen-carrying solution in cats: 72 cases (1998-2000).” J Amer Vet Med Assoc 221(1): 96-102.
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