Establishing blood gas ranges in healthy bovine neonates differentiated by age, sex, and breed type
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CitationDillane, P., Krump, L., Kennedy, A., Sayers, R. G., & Sayers, G. P. (2018). Establishing blood gas ranges in healthy bovine neonates differentiated by age, sex, and breed type. Journal of Dairy Science, 101(4), 3205–3212. https://doi.org/10.3168/jds.2017-13445
AbstractCalf mortality and morbidity commonly occurs within the first month of life postpartum. Standard health ranges are invaluable aids in diagnostic veterinary medicine to confirm normal or the degree and nature of abnormal parameters in (sub)clinically ill animals. Extensive research has indicated significant differences between the physiologies of neonate and adult cattle, particularly for blood parameters such as pH, base excess, anion gap, and bicarbonate (HCO3−). The objective of this research was to determine the influence of age, sex, and breed type, in addition to environmental factors, on the normal blood gas profiles of neonatal calves, and thus develop a scientifically validated reference range accounting for any significant factors. The study was conducted on healthy neonatal calves (n = 288), and completed over a 2-yr period. Individual calf blood gas analysis was conducted for parameters of pH, base excess, Na+, K+, Ca2+, Cl−, glucose, total hemoglobin, HCO3−, pCO2, anion gap, strong ion difference, and hematocrit levels. Regression procedures examined the combined effect of year, farm, age, breed type, sex, and hours postfeeding on each variable. Significant effects were observed for age, sex, and breed type on several of the blood gas variables. Furthermore, year, farm, and hours postfeeding appeared to have less of an influence on neonatal bovine blood gas profiles. Consequently, specific ranges based on the neonate's age, sex, and breed type will allow for more detailed and accurate diagnosis of health and ill health in neonatal calves.
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