Eleven awake dogs and two cats received high-frequency jet ventilation (HFJV) via a transtracheal catheter for 6 hours to evaluate their clinical tolerance to the technique. A bronchoscopic examination was performed in all animals prior to and the morning of the day after the procedure to determine the gross effects of the technique on the tracheal epithelium.
All animals tolerated the technique well, exhibiting no discomfort and only a minimal amount of coughing. Only one dog exhibited coughing on the day following the procedure. No bronchoscopic changes were noted after HFJV in one dog. In one dog and one cat, the only observed change was an increase in the prominence of the vascularity compared to that observed prior to HFJV. The remaining animals exhibited more severe tracheal changes that included: an accumulation of mucus (seven dogs, one cat), focal spots of hemorrhage (two dogs), linear stretches of epithelial denuding (two dogs), and diffuse reddening and epithelial denuding (four dogs).
High-frequency jet ventilation by a transtracheal intravenous catheter is well tolerated for short-term ventilatory support in dogs and cats, but the magnitude of the tracheal damage observed in the present report may preclude long-term ventilatory support by this tecnique.