Delivering supplemental oxygen to dogs and cats: a practical review - DVM
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Delivering supplemental oxygen to dogs and cats: a practical review


Photos 1a : A nasal cannula is inserted and fixed in place by placing skin staples into the nose band made of adhesive tape. The oxygen tubing Y section "slides" snug behing the head.
Patients facing immediate life-threatening conditions must have an inhaled oxygen concentration as high as possible.

In the first of this two-part discussion, we considered three methods of increasing inhaled oxygen concentrations to as high as 40 percent to 80 percent.


Photos1b: A nasal cannula is inserted and fixed in place by placing skin staples into the nose band made of adhesive tape. The oxygen tubing Y section "slides" snug behing the head.
Now we will consider eight additional methods of delivering supplemental oxygen, including a new one that shows promise.

Nasal cannula

This is a simple and rapid technique that involves the placement of a human nasal cannula that looks like two small prongs, each 0.5 cm to 1.5 cm in length, that are commercially available and inexpensive. They come in three sizes: infant, pediatric and adult (for animals > 5 kg, 5-15 kg, 16 kg and above, respectively).

A nose band is made from adhesive tape and skin-stapled on each side of the patient's face. The Y section of the oxygen tubing with the slide is tightened behind the head. (Photos 1a and 1b).


Photo 2: A nasal catheter is placed and secured with a suture at the base of the nostril and several sutures or skin staples used to hold it to the side of the patient's face. A section of adhesive tape is used to secure the catheter and oxygen tubing as well.
It is a common technique used when it is anticipated that patients will need to be moved for radiographs, blood draws and require frequent monitoring.

Nasal catheter


Photo 3: Plastic wrap is laid over the ventral 50 percent to 80 percent of an Elizabethan collar and oxygen tubing attached on the inside. This Crowe collar is very effective in supplying supplemental oxygen to patients without using invasive means or causing isolation.
Sedation is required in some cases to place the tube; this is very acceptable, and I often prefer it because it is less stressful for many patients (and the clinician).

A few drops of proparicaine are placed into the nose, with the head mildly elevated. A suture is placed at the base of the nostril using either a swaged on needle or a 20-g needle and 3-0 section of nylon.

A 3.5 to 8 French-sized feeding tube is selected and lubricated with water-soluble jelly (4 percent lidocaine jelly works well). Premeasure the tube so the tip is at the first or second premolar. Insert the tube in a ventral and medial direction. Continue until the tube is placed at the predetermined level.

Now take the preplaced suture at the base of the nostril and go around the tube a few times and tie. Repeat this "friction" knot. Tape can be used as butterflies to hold the tube, but usually is not necessary.


Photo 4: Mask with a non-rebreathing system attached. This system also is fitted with a positive end-expirarory pressure (PEEP) valve or a restrictor assay valve.
Place tape around the neck to anchor the tube and attach the oxygen tubing (fluid administration set tubing can be used to deliver the oxygen, as in Photo 2). Start at 100 ml/kg up to a maximum of 4 liters per minute. Run it through a humidifier if possible, and start with an oxygen flow rate of 50 to 100 ml/kg/min. These can be placed in both nostrils and attached via a Y connector to one oxygen tubing going to the flow meter.


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Source: DVM360 MAGAZINE,
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