Article Text

other Versions

Effect of lingual gauze swab placement on pulse oximeter readings in anaesthetised dogs and cats
  1. A. Mair, BVM&S, Cert VA, DipECVAA1,
  2. F. Martinez-Taboada, LV, Cert VA, DipECVAA, MRCVS2 and
  3. M. Nitzan, PhD, Professor Emeritus3
  1. 1University Veterinary Teaching Hospital-Sydney, 65 Parramatta Road, Camperdown, Sydney, NSW 2006, Australia
  2. 2Wear Referrals, Veterinary Hospital, Bradbury, Stockton-on-Tees, TS21 2ES, UK
  3. 3Department of Applied Physics/Electro-Optics, Jerusalem College of Technology, Yerushalayim, Israel
  1. E-mail for correspondence: alastair.mair{at}


This study aimed to evaluate the effect of lingual gauze swab placement on pulse oximeter readings in anaesthetised dogs and cats. Following anaesthetic induction, the following pulse oximeter probe configurations were performed: no gauze swab (control), placement of a gauze swab between the tongue and the probe, placement of different thicknesses of gauze swab, placement of red cotton fabric, placement of a sheet of white paper and placement of the probe and gauze swab on different locations on the tongue. Oxygen saturation (SpO2) and peripheral perfusion index (PI) were recorded. Placement of a gauze swab between the pulse oximeter probe and the tongue in anaesthetised dogs and cats resulted in significantly higher SpO2 values compared with the control group. In dogs, PI values were significantly higher than the control in all groups except the quarter thickness swab group. In cats, PI was significantly higher in the double thickness swab and white paper groups compared with the control. Cats had significantly higher SpO2 and lower PI values than dogs. The authors propose that increased contact pressure is responsible for significantly higher SpO2 and PI readings with the use of a lingual gauze swab resulting from changes in transmural pressure and arterial compliance.

  • Anaesthesia
  • Dogs
  • Cats
  • Pulse oximeter

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.