In people, the dose of propofol (DOP) required for procedural sedation and anesthesia decreases significantly with age. The objective of this study was to determine if the DOP required to perform endotracheal intubation decreases with age in dogs.
Retrospective case series.
Data from dogs anesthetized at referral center (2017-2020) were analyzed with three multivariate linear regression models with backward elimination using a combination of either absolute age, physiologic age, or life expectancy (ratio between age at the time of anesthetic event and expected age of death for each breed obtained from previous literature) as well as other factors as independent variables, and DOP as the dependent variable. The DOP for each quartile of life expectancy (<25%, 25-50%, 50-75%, 75-100%, >100%) was compared using one-way ANOVA. Significance was set at alpha = 0.025.
Mean age was 7.2 ± 4.1 years, life expectancy 59.8 ± 33%, weight 19 ± 14 kg, and DOP 3.76 ± 1.8 mg kg-1. Among age models, only life expectancy was a predictor of DOP (-0.37 mg kg-1; P = 0.013) but of minimal clinical importance. The DOP by life age expectancy quartile was 3.9 ± 2.3, 3.8 ± 1.8, 3.6 ± 1.8, 3.7 ± 1.7, and 3.4 ± 1.6 mg kg-1, respectively (P = 0.20). Yorkshire Terrier, Chihuahua, Maltese, mixed breed dogs under 10 kg, and Shih Tzu required higher DOP. Status of neutered male, ASA E, and Boxer, Labrador and Golden Retriever breeds decreased DOP, along with certain premedication drugs.
Conclusions and clinical relevance:
In contrast to what is observed in people, an age cut-off predictive of DOP does not exist. Percentage of elapsed life expectancy along with other factors such as breed, premedication drug, emergency procedure, and reproductive status significantly alter DOP. In older dogs, the dose of propofol can be adjusted based on their elapsed life expectancy.