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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. 1 Department of Medical Imaging and Small Animal Orthopaedics, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium
  2. 2 Small Animal Department, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Ghent University, Merelbeke, Belgium
  3. 3 Department 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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