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TDK conference 2015

Effect of different body positions on blood pressure measurment by HDO-method in dogs
Becker Zsolt - year 6
SzIU, Faculty of Veterinary Science, Department and Clinic of Internal Medicine
Supervisors: Fruzsina Falus DVM, Ferenc Manczur DVM


Nowadays, indirect blood pressure measurement methods have become a daily routine in small animal practice. Because various blood pressure measuring techniques and devices have different accuracy, many investigations were carried out to find the method with the highest accuracy, and which we can use easily in daily veterinary practice. Based on the literature data and on the former research of the Cardiology and Nephrology Research Team of the Internal Medicine Department, it appears that the High Definition Oscillometry (HDO) device provides the most accurate results in dogs, especially when the measurement is performed on the tail. However, there are only few studies about the effect of body position on the measured blood pressure values.

The goal of our research was to determine how the obtained blood pressure values are affected by changing the body position of the dogs. We measured the blood pressure of 35 dogs (27 purebred and 8 mixed breed). There were 23 bitches and 12 males, their body weight was between 3,6 and 70 kilograms, their age was between 6 months and 14 years. We performed the blood pressure measurements with the HDO method on the tail under standardized circumstances by using the same protocol for each dog. We compared the systolic, diastolic and mean arterial pressures and the measured pulse rate in three different body positions. The order of measurements was randomly selected and at least three consecutive measurement values were averaged in each body position, thus we used the results of about 450 measurements. The obtained values were compared by paired T-test (p<0,05 was considered significant) and Bland-Altman analysis.

The systolic, diastolic and mean arterial pressures were fairly similar at different body positions e.g. systolic arterial pressures were 137+/-25 mmHg, 135+/-22 mm Hg and 139+/-23 mmHg in standing, lateral and sternal recumbent position, respectively. Although, there were no significant differences in between the different body position in any of the measured blood pressure values when compared in groups, the individual dogs’ blood pressure varied between the measurements. For example, the systolic arterial pressure measured in standing position can be 1,7+/-13,8 mmHg different from the blood pressure value obtained in lateral recumbent position in the same dog. However, this difference is equal in magnitude with the published within the day variability of blood pressure measurements in dogs.

We can conclude that the body positon of the dogs doesn’t affect the blood pressure measurements when performed on their tail. As dogs usually prefer different body positions, the position which is the least disturbing to the individual should be chosen for the measurements. Though, it is advisable to insist on the chosen position in the same dog during the later control exams, the blood pressure values obtained from different individuals in different body positions are readily comparable.

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