Abstract Objective: To report a life-threatening complication (airway collapse) associated with a common procedure (anesthesia) and to describe its successful management.
Case Summary: A dog without pre-existing signs of respiratory disease developed hypoxemia and severe atelectasis in the post-anesthetic recovery period and was demonstrated, by bronchoscopic examination, to have severe airway collapse. Mechanical ventilation was used to re-expand collapsed lung units and to prevent re-collapse. A ventilation strategy designed to minimize airway and alveolar trauma was used. The dog was successfully weaned from the ventilator and made a full recovery.
Unique Information Provided: Acute, severe hypoxemia due to airway collapse occurred in the post-operative period in a dog with no signs of pre-existing respiratory disease. The dog was successfully managed with short-term mechanical ventilation. High frequency jet ventilation was used for a diagnostic bronchoscopy.