Estimated reading time: 2 minutes
by Dr Stephanie Lindeman, Bonny Hills Vet Clinic, NSW
When our old patient monitor died, I bought a new Anitek unit and added mainstream capnography to it. After a steep learning curve, we have realised that this is an important parameter in monitoring anaesthesia, especially in those cases that are exhibiting poor breathing.
What’s good about it
The device has two different sizes—one for a size 4 and smaller endotracheal tubes and the other for a size 4.5 and larger tubes. The correct size adapter snaps into the device and the device is then connected between the ET tube and the breathing system. It gives some extra peace of mind during anaesthesia and assists us in deciding whether to provide more breathing support to the patient. Alarms can be set within the patient monitor to warn of too low or too high ETCO2. Capnography is essential when undertaking thoracotomies and when using V-gels for rabbit anaesthesia.
The adapters can be easily cleaned with a supplied list of approved cleaners—we use Clinell wipes that are also used on our ultrasound probes. Adding capnography to our clinic has been a great improvement to our patient monitoring during anaesthesia.
What’s not so good
Having two different sized adaptors can cause confusion when setting up the monitor. It increases the dead space at the end of the endotracheal tube which can be of concern in an unstable small bodyweight patient. It can, however, be easily disconnected and reconnected.