• anesthesiology;
  • clinical pathology;
  • critical care;
  • fluid balance;
  • monitoring;
  • pressure


Objective – To determine the difference between colloid osmotic pressure (COP) values determined from plasma versus those determined from whole blood.

Design – Prospective observational study.

Settings – University veterinary teaching hospital.

Animals – Fifty-three healthy dogs.

Interventions – None.

Measurements and Main Results – Whole blood and plasma COP, CBC, plasma biochemistry. In all dogs, plasma COP values were significantly lower (P=0.02) than whole blood COP, with a mean of difference of 0.5 mm Hg. The mean and median whole blood COP was 21.75 and 21.4 mm Hg, respectively, with a range of 17.9–27.1 mm Hg. The mean and median plasma COP was 21.2 and 20.9 mm Hg with a range of 16.7–28.9 mm Hg.

Conclusions – While significant difference exists between plasma and whole blood COP, the individual values are within expected reference intervals for dogs (21–25 mm Hg). Using either sample appears to provide the same information in clinically healthy dog; however, it is recommended that clinicians utilize the same sample type for comparison in an individual patient.