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W20-040: The effect of an intravenous injection of branched chain amino acids on body temperature of cats undergoing general anesthesia

Low body temperature (hypothermia) is one of the most common complications associated with anesthesia. In fact, over 97% of anesthetized cats become hypothermic. Hypothermia may increase the risk of adverse events associated with surgery including infection, delayed wound healing, clotting problems, slow recovery time and prolonged hospitalization. Other warming techniques have been used to minimize hypothermia in cats. Only forced warm air blankets have been shown to minimize heat loss during anesthesia of cats. However, these require expensive, special devices, may increase the risk of surgical site infection, and cannot be used in some environments such as in MRI suites. Thus, alternative techniques that are effective, eliminate the need for specialized devices, can be used in multiple environments, and are inexpensive should be investigated. Nutrient induced thermogenesis is the administration of a substance that induces heat production as a byproduct of normal metabolism. One substance, amino acids, when administered intravenously, have a beneficial effect on minimizing hypothermia in people and dogs. Amino acid injection attenuates heat loss, improves recovery time after anesthesia and decreases the prevalence of shivering without adverse effects. However, there are no studies which evaluate the effects of amino acid administration in cats. The objective of this study is to determine whether a single amino acid injection can minimize hypothermia in cats during anesthesia. We expect cats receiving amino acid will have less heat loss and shorter recovery times from anesthesia. This study will demonstrate the benefit of amino acids use for safer anesthetic care of cats.

Grant ID: W20-040

Status: Active

Year Funded: 2020

Amount awarded: $7,665

Investigator: Stuart Clark-Price