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Keywords:

  • anti-freeze toxicity;
  • lab error;
  • hyperlactatemia;
  • glycolate

Abstract

Objective

To describe false increases in plasma lactate concentration measured on point-of-care analyzers in 2 dogs with ethylene glycol (EG) intoxication.

Case Summary

Two dogs presenting with EG intoxication had extreme increases of plasma lactate concentrations recorded on a point-of-care machine. Laboratory analysis by spectrophotometry of lactate concentration determined these lactate measurements to be erroneous. False increases in plasma lactate concentration were demonstrated in 2 out of 3 point-of-care machines tested.

New or Unique Information Provided

Glycolate, a toxic metabolite of EG, can interfere with the measurement of plasma lactate by some analyzers and this may delay the correct diagnosis of EG toxicity if not recognized.