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Am J Vet Res. 1990 Apr;51(4):571-6.

Effect of meal feeding on plasma volume and urinary electrolyte clearance in ponies.

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Department of Anatomy, College of Veterinary Medicine, North Carolina State University, Raleigh 27606.


The effect of meal size and frequency on plasma volume, plasma aldosterone concentration and urinary Na and K clearances was determined in ponies. A daily maintenance ration of hay-grain pellets was provided either as a multiple feeding regimen, ie, 12 equal portions fed at 2-hour intervals, or as single large feedings, ie, half the ration fed every 12 hours at 0800 and 2000 hours. Only the effect of the single morning feeding was studied, using the latter regimen. Serial measurements of plasma volume were made by use of an indicator-dilution technique and indocyanine green (0.15 mg/kg of body weight, IV) that allowed repeated determinations at 2-hour intervals. Ingestion of the single large meal caused a 15% decrease in plasma volume by the end of a 1-hour feeding period. Feeding hypovolemia was confirmed by a coincident increase in plasma protein concentration (12%) and, in separate experiments, by analysis of postfeeding changes in the elimination of Evans blue dye. Plasma aldosterone concentration was significantly (P less than 0.05) increased from 2 to 5 hours after feeding. Urinary Na clearance decreased in response to feeding and remained lower than the prefeeding value until 9 hours after feeding. Urinary K clearance increased from prefeeding and reached a peak value between 5 and 7 hours after feeding. Creatinine clearance was unaffected. In contrast, the aforementioned variables were unchanged during the multiple regimen. Results indicate that ingestion of a large concentrate meal by ponies causes periprandial hypovolemia, activation of the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system, and a subsequent antinatriuresis-kaliuresis that lasts for several hours.

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