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J Small Anim Pract. 2003 Feb;44(2):65-70.

Assessment of acid-base status of cats with naturally occurring chronic renal failure.

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Royal Veterinary College, Royal College Street, London NW1 0TU.


Metabolic acidosis is reported to be a common complication of feline chronic renal failure (CRF) but acid-base status of feline patients with this disease is rarely assessed by general practitioners. A cross-sectional study involving 59 cases of naturally occurring feline CRF was conducted to determine the prevalence of acid-base disturbances. Cases were categorised on the basis of their plasma creatinine concentrations as mild, moderate or severe. A group of 27 clinically healthy, age-matched cats was assessed for comparison. A low venous blood pH (<7.270) was found in 10 of the 19 severe cases (52.6 per cent), three of the 20 moderate cases (15 per cent) and none of the 20 mild cases. Acidaemia was associated with an increased anion gap contributed to by both low plasma bicarbonate and low chloride ion concentrations. Biochemical analysis of urine samples showed urine pH to decrease with increasing severity of renal failure. Urinary loss of bicarbonate was not associated with the occurrence of acidaemia and there was a tendency for urinary ammonium ion excretion to decrease as the severity of renal failure increased. Cats with naturally occurring CRF do not show plasma biochemical evidence of acid-base disturbances until the disease is advanced.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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