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Effects of intravenous administration of dexmedetomidine on intraocular pressure and pupil size in clinically normal dogs


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M. M. López-Murcia
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Objective  To evaluate the effects of the intravenous administration of dexmedetomidine on the intraocular pressure (IOP) and pupil size (PS) in normal dogs.

Animals studied  Forty-two animals with no ocular abnormalities were included in this study.

Procedure  Following initial readings (T0) of IOP and PS, the dogs received an intravenous injection of dexmedetomidine (5 μg/kg). Both measurements were repeated 10 min (T10) and 20 min (T20) later.

Results  There were no significant differences in IOP measurements between T0 and T10, although a significant decrease was observed at T20. A significant miosis was found in the first 10 min after sedation. At T20, the PS slightly increased, resulting in no statistical differences with T0 and T10.

Conclusion  Dexmedetomidine is an excellent option for surgery or diagnostic ocular procedures in dogs when a specific control of IOP is required. However, it must be used in combination with mydriatics in ophthalmic surgical or diagnostic procedures, which require complete dilation of the pupil.