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Influence of ageing on quantitative contrast-enhanced ultrasound of the kidneys in healthy cats
  1. Emmelie Stock1,
  2. Dominique Paepe2,
  3. Sylvie Daminet2,
  4. Luc Duchateau3,
  5. Jimmy H Saunders1 and
  6. Katrien Vanderperren1
  1. 1Department of Medical Imaging and Small Animal Orthopaedics, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium
  2. 2Small Animal Department, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium
  3. 3Department of Comparative Physiology and Biometrics, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium
  1. E-mail for correspondence; Emmelie.Stock{at}


The degenerative effects of ageing on the kidneys have been extensively studied in humans. However, only recently interest has been focused on renal ageing in veterinary medicine. Contrast-enhanced ultrasound allows non-invasive evaluation of renal perfusion in conscious cats. Renal perfusion parameters were obtained in 43 healthy cats aged 1–16 years old, and the cats were divided in four age categories: 1–3 years, 3–6 years, 6–10 years and over 10 years. Routine renal parameters as serum creatinine, serum urea, urine-specific gravity, urinary protein:creatinine ratio and systolic blood pressure were also measured. No significant differences in any of the perfusion parameters were observed among the different age categories. A trend towards a lower peak enhancement and wash-in area under the curve with increasing age, suggestive for a lower blood volume, was detected when comparing the cats over 10 years old with the cats of 1–3 years old. Additionally, no significant age-effect was observed for the serum and urine parameters, whereas a higher blood pressure was observed in healthy cats over 10 years old.

  • ageing
  • renal perfusion
  • contrast-enhanced ultrasound
  • cat
  • kidneys

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  • Funding This study was funded by Bijzonder Onderzoeksfonds (2015003301).

  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Ethics approval The study protocol was approved by the local ethical committee of the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Belgium (EC2015/68) and the Deontological Committee of the Belgian Federal Agency for the Safety of the Food Chain.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

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