Gastric dilatation-volvulus (GDV) was created experimentally and maintained for 90 minutes in 16 anesthetized, mixed-breed dogs. After the GDV was corrected, normal saline solution (0.044 mL/kg intravenously [IV]) was administered to eight dogs (controls), and flunixin meglumine (2.2 mg/kg IV) was administered to eight dogs. Microspheres labeled with radioactive cobalt, scandium, tin, or niobium were injected intravenously at baseline (before GDV) and minutes 90, 100, and 270, respectively, to determine tissue blood flows. Plasma endotoxin and prostacyclin were measured at the same intervals.
Electrocardiogram, mean arterial pressure, portal pressure, and cardiac output were recorded continuously. Dogs were euthanatized at minute 270 and necropsied. There was no significant difference between treatment groups for any measured variable at any time. Endotoxin levels increased significantly during GDV. Prostacyclin levels were lower in dogs treated with flunixin meglumine than in controls at minutes 210 and 270.
Histopathologic findings were similar for all dogs and consistent with those associated with endotoxemia. Flunixin meglumine treatment did not alter cardiac indices or tissue blood flows significantly. However, elevation of prostacyclin was inhibited by flunixin meglumine, which suggested that continued effects of endotoxic damage might be attenuated or inhibited.