Saturday, April 11, 2009


Lucy, a six-month old basset hound, is very unlucky. Her humans found her barely conscious, drowning in the pool one Sunday morning. At presentation, she was almost blue, dyspneic, weak and recumbent. At the same time, her stomach appears bloated. We took a radiograph and saw a very dilated stomach filled with gas and most likely also fluids. The lung area is also very hazy as the pool water may have accumulated with the respiratory lining most likely compromised.

Oxygen was provided yet since Lucy was conscious she was constantly shying away from the oxygen hood. Since bloating is also an emergency condition then it also has to be corrected thus, blood profile and baseline blood tests were done which were actually normal.

the radiograph on the left was taken before gastric intubation. notice the dilated stomach filled with gas and fluid. also notice the hazy lungfield (on both radiographs). the radiograph on the right was taken after the stomach was relieved of the gases and fluids.

During intubation for gas anesthesia, blood came out of lucy’s trachea, an indication that severe bleeding from the lungs has taken place. Blood accumulation will further compromise gas exchange. However, endotracheal intubation will also be beneficial to provide almost 100% oxygen. Then we did gastric intubation to release gases from the stomach. Aside from air, mixture of gastric fluid, pool water and blood was also recovered. Another x-ray was also taken check and there we saw that the stomach is already relieved of gases and fluids. Now we are back to the lungs… the blood+fluid filled lungs.

me and my assistant during gastric intubation. Lucy is on gas.

When Lucy was taken off the endotracheal tube, hood oxygenation was provided, she was actually pink as compared to the bluish color she was earlier. She also received all medications however, she still left us that same day…

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