Full recovery after cardiac arrest secondary to accidental iatrogenic venous air embolism in a cat


  • The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Address correspondence and reprint requests to Dr. Reid K. Nakamura, Red Bank Veterinary Hospital, 197 Hance Avenue, Tinton Falls, NJ 07724, USA. Email: r.kiyoshi.nakamura@gmail.com


Objective – To describe the successful management of cardiac arrest following accidental venous air embolism (VAE) in a cat.

Case Summary – A 3-year-old spayed female domestic shorthair cat, weighing 4 kg, was presented for continuation of its chemotherapy protocol. The cat was inadvertently administered approximately 5.5 mL of air IV during initiation of fluid therapy. Immediate cardiac arrest resulted and CPR successfully achieved return of spontaneous circulation. The cat was discharged 5 days later and is reportedly clinically normal 7 months post-discharge.

New or Unique Information Provided – VAE has been rarely reported in the veterinary literature. This is the first report of a cat surviving cardiac arrest secondary to VAE.