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Keywords:

  • canine;
  • portal vein;
  • ultrasonography;
  • duplex pulsed Doppler

A duplex ultrasound system incorporating a pulsed wave Doppler ultrasound probe with conventional B-mode real-time imaging was used to evaluate portal vein blood flow in eight normal dogs. Adequate visualization of the cranial abdominal vessels was obtained from the right lateral 11th or 12th intercostal space. Doppler spectral analysis showed non-pulsatile flow with a wide range of linear flow velocities across the vessel lumen typical of laminar blood flow. Results for portal vein blood flows were 49.8 ± 13.5 ml/min/kg body weight (mean ± SD) with a range of 37.8 - 76.8 ml/min/kg body weight. These values overestimate portal blood flow by approximately 2 times when compared with published studies using invasive techniques. This overestimation is primarily due to the use of the maximal flow velocity in the blood flow calculations.