Hypoperfusion and acute traumatic coagulopathy in severely traumatized canine patients

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To determine the incidence of acute traumatic coagulopathy in dogs suffering severe trauma and to investigate the association of markers of hypoperfusion with coagulation abnormalities.


A prospective observational study performed June, 2009 to February, 2011.


A university teaching hospital.


Thirty client-owned dogs weighing >5 kilograms that were presented to the Tuft's Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine following severe trauma as defined by an animal trauma triage score (ATT) ≥5 and having received no resuscitation with IV fluids or blood products prior to blood sampling.



Measurements and Main Results

Prior to resuscitation, data obtained at the time of admission to the emergency service included HCT, platelet count, lactate concentration, pH, base excess, thromboelastrogram (TEG), prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time, fibrinogen level, and protein C activity. Rectal temperature and ATT were recorded for all dogs. Neither HCT nor platelet count was significantly decreased in any of the dogs. Based on G values as measured by TEG, 10/30 dogs (33%) showed evidence of hypercoagulability. Hypocoagulability as determined by prothrombin time, activated partial thromboplastin time, or TEG was not shown in any of the 30 dogs.


Dogs with severe trauma may experience hypercoagulability that is unrelated to fluid resuscitation or transfusion therapy. Future studies are warranted to better characterize coagulation changes in dogs with severe trauma, particularly in relationship to fluid therapies and/or hemorrhage.

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