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Keywords:

  • Critical care;
  • Hyperglycemia;
  • Intravenous feeding;
  • Retrospective

Background: Parenteral nutrition (PN) is increasingly used to support hospitalized dogs and cats. Published assessments of outcome are limited.

Objective: Evaluate type and prevalence of complications and risk factors for death and complications in dogs and cats receiving PN.

Animals: Three hundred and nineteen dogs and 112 cats that received PN at a teaching hospital between 2000 and 2008.

Methods: Retrospective case review. Diagnosis, duration of PN administration, concurrent enteral feeding, death, and mechanical, septic, and metabolic complications were abstracted from medical records. Association of each parameter with complications and death was analyzed by binary logistic regression.

Results: Pancreatitis was the most common diagnosis (109/319 dogs, 34/112 cats), and 137/319 dogs and 51/112 cats died. Dogs and cats received 113 ± 40% and 103 ± 32% of resting energy requirement, respectively. Mechanical (81/319 dogs, 16/112 cats) and septic (20/319 dogs, 6/112 cats) complications were not associated with death (P > .05). Hyperglycemia was the most common metabolic complication (96/158 dogs, 31/37 cats). Hypercreatininemia in dogs (8/79) was the only complication associated with death (P < .01). Chronic kidney disease in dogs, hepatic lipidosis in cats, and longer duration of inadequate caloric intake before PN in both species were negatively associated with survival (P < .05). Factors positively associated with survival included longer duration of PN administration in both species, enteral feeding in cats with any disease, and enteral feeding in dogs with respiratory disease (P < .05).

Conclusions and Clinical Importance: PN can be effectively used to provide the energy requirements of most critically ill dogs and cats. Most complications accompanying PN administration do not affect survival.