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Abstract

Harold Davis, BA, RVT, VTS (ECC), Tracey Jensen, DVM, DABVP, Anthony Johnson, DVM, DACVECC, Pamela Knowles, CVT, VTS (ECC), Robert Meyer, DVM, DACVAA, Renee Rucinsky, DVM, DAVBP (Feline), Heidi Shafford, DVM, PhD, DACVAA

Abstract

Fluid therapy is important for many medical conditions in veterinary patients. The assessment of patient history, chief complaint, physical exam findings, and indicated additional testing will determine the need for fluid therapy. Fluid selection is dictated by the patient’s needs, including volume, rate, fluid composition required, and location the fluid is needed (e.g., interstitial versus intravascular). Therapy must be individualized, tailored to each patient, and constantly re-evaluated and reformulated according to changes in status. Needs may vary according to the existence of either acute or chronic conditions, patient pathology (e.g., acid-base, oncotic, electrolyte abnormalities), and comorbid conditions. All patients should be assessed for three types of fluid disturbances: changes in volume, changes in content, and/or changes in distribution. The goals of these guidelines are to assist the clinician in prioritizing goals, selecting appropriate fluids and rates of administration, and assessing patient response to therapy. These guidelines provide recommendations for fluid administration for anesthetized patients and patients with fluid disturbances. (J Am Anim Hosp Assoc 2013; 49:149–159. DOI 10.5326/JAAHA-MS-5868)

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