Blood pressure: a critical factor (Proceedings)
It has been stated that: "Systemic hypertension associated with kidney disease is a very real problem, and has been diagnosed in over 60% of cats with chronic renal disease. Hypertension can have multi-systemic effects if left untreated, including left ventricular hypertrophy and cardiac failure, retinal detachment and blindness, cerebrovascular hemorrhage, and progression of renal dysfunction." (Rosemary Henik, DVM, MS, DACVIM) While this is true, let's look at the applicability of measuring blood pressure, methods of assessment and the interpretation of results in clinical practice. These notes review the literature from 1990 up until the end of 2004. The interested reader is strongly urged to read the ACVIM Consensus Statement from 2007 entitled: Guidelines for the Identification, Evaluation, and Management of Systemic Hypertension in Dogs and Cats.
1. Systemic arterial pressure is the pressure within the arteries and arterioles
Non-invasive, indirect arterial measurements of blood pressure should be made in all anaesthetized, critical or high-risk patients to detect and monitor management of hypotension. This technique should be used widely as a screening method for the pre-clinical detection of hypertension in patients with renal disease, hyperthyroidism, ocular changes consistent with hypertension, a cardiac murmur, or left ventricular hypertrophy, neurological dysfunction and all cats over eight years of age.