Doppler ultrasound can be used to monitor umbilical arterial blood flow in lightly sedated pigs at multiple gestational ages

Claire Stenhouse, Peter Tennant, William Duncan, Cheryl Ashworth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Doppler ultrasound was performed under moderate sedation (ketamine and azaperone) for 30 min to monitor umbilical arterial (UA) blood flow in one uterine horn of Large White × Landrace gilts (n = 23) at Gestational Days (GD) 30, 45, 60 and 90. Gilts were scanned before they were killed to examine relationships between litter size, sex ratio and five UA parameters (peak systolic velocity (PSV), end diastolic velocity (EDV), A/B (PSV to EDV) ratio, fetal heart rate (FHR) and resistance index (RI)). In gilts in which scans were obtained from all fetuses in the scanned horn, relationships between UA parameters, and fetal weight and sex were examined. A subset of gilts were sedated, scanned and recovered (SSR) earlier in gestation (GD30 or GD45) to assess the effects of sedation on later fetal development by comparison with control litters (no previous sedation). Temporal changes were observed in all UA parameters (P ≤ 0.001). At GD60 and GD90, FHR decreased with increasing duration of sedation (P ≤ 0.001). Sex ratio and fetal weight affected UA blood flow, whereas litter size and fetal sex did not. SSR at GD30 and GD45 was associated with decreased fetal weight at GD60 (P ≤ 0.001) and GD90 (P = 0.06) respectively, compared with controls. These results suggest maternal sedation during gestation affects fetal development, which should be investigated further. Measuring UA blood flow in growth-restricted porcine fetuses throughout gestation may be feasible.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1402-1411
JournalReproduction, Fertility and Development
Volume30
Issue number11
Early online date4 May 2018
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 4 May 2018

Keywords

  • gestation
  • gilt
  • sedation

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