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article imageLactate helps vets to diagnose sick cats

By Tim Sandle     May 27, 2017 in Health
With sick cats suffering with illnesses that lead to low blood pressure a study has found animals with a normal level of lactate are more likely to survive. This could lead to a new treatment option.
The research takes the form of a retrospective study, looking at the veterinary records of treated cats at the intensive care unit of Penn's Ryan Hospital. The cats studied had different conditions linked by low blood pressure, or low blood oxygenation, with behaviors that showed signs of lower alertness or lethargy. Over the course of time, some of these cats went onto survive and others did not.
The variance between cats who survive illnesses that lead to low blood pressure, and cats that do not, appears to be down to lactate levels. Lactate is a byproduct of the metabolism under low-oxygen conditions. Lactate exits the cells and is transported to the liver, where it is oxidized back to glucose, which means that a certain level is needed for healthy function. The cats studied were normalized for age and weight, and low blood pressure was defined as readings below 90 mm Hg (the common measure of hypotension).
A cat called Gizmo.
A cat called Gizmo.
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The scientists behind the study hope that the findings helps with future diagnosis and also with treatment options. According to Professor Deborah C. Silverstein: "With critically ill cats, it can sometimes be difficult to accurately determine a prognosis."
The research has been published in the Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, with the research paper titled "Survival analysis of hypotensive cats admitted to an intensive care unit with or without hyperlactatemia: 39 cases (2005–2011)."
More about Cats, lactate, Blood pressure, Animals
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