by Tanya Finneran VN, Coast Animal Health Lakehaven, NSW
This is a multi-parameter patient monitor that provides readings for ECG, respiration rates, SpO2, blood pressure and temperature. It also includes capnography components that have helped increase the level of care we provide for our patients. We do a lot of work with rescue groups and see many juvenile animals. Being so small and young, there’s always the possibility of anaesthesia complications but the BM3 allows us to administer a gold standard of care.
What’s good about it
The BM3 is a very high-quality piece of multi-parameter equipment. Our previous unit, which we still utilise, doesn’t have a capnography component so that is a valuable addition to our practice.
The BM3’s multiple parameter checks certainly makes for a safer anaesthetic. For example, you may have a young, healthy, stable patient with no predisposed or pre-detected cardiac issues. You may think you don’t really need to monitor ECG but the more information you have, the safer the nursing and veterinary staff can make anaesthesia for that patient.
The probes are all a little different and attach in various ways to the animal. It’s a fairly quick and simple process to fully set up with each animal. It works very well with dogs and cats that make up the majority of our client base.
What’s not so good
Any mechanical device can be impacted by human error, so you need to ensure that the machine is correctly set up and confirm the lead placement. The unit needs to be calibrated according to the patient’s size, particularly SBP and ETC02, every time it’s used. If a machine is faulty—and so far we’ve had no problems with the BM3—our staff need to be able to identify that the unit is giving faulty readings and troubleshoot accordingly. Often this is due to artefacts or interference.