The effect of the duration of propofol administration on recovery from anesthesia in cats

Peter J Pascoe, Jan Ilkiw, Karen J. Frischmeyer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

74 Scopus citations


Objective: To determine the effect of induction, a 30-minute, and a 150-minute infusion of propofol on the rate of recovery in cats. Study design: Randomized, cross-over, prospective experimental study. Animals: Six healthy adult spayed female cats (mean 4.3, range 2-7 years old) weighing 3.9 ± 0.5 kg. Methods: Cats received each of three treatments: anesthetic induction with propofol (T1), induction followed by a 30-minute infusion (T30) and induction followed by a 150-minute infusion (T150). Propofol infusions were increased or decreased to maintain a sluggish pedal withdrawal reflex. Animals were monitored throughout the anesthetic period and during the recovery. Venous blood samples were collected from a central venous catheter before anesthesia and at 30 minutes for the 30-minute infusion and at 30, 60, 90, 120 and 150 minutes for the 150-minute infusion. The ability of the cat to lift its head, crawl, stand and walk without ataxia was recorded at 5, 10, 20, 40, 60, 80, 120, 160, 180, 210 and 240 minutes after the completion of propofol administration. Data from physiological values were analyzed using either a Student's t-test (30-minute infusion) or an anova (150-minute infusion). A nonparametric Friedman test (and post-hoc Tukey's Studentized range test) was used to determine whether there were differences in the time taken to recover. Results were considered significant if p < 0.05. Results: Time taken to walk without ataxia was significantly greater in T150 (148 ± 40 minutes) compared with T1 (80 ± 15 minutes) and T30 (74 ± 26 minutes). (No other recovery times were significantly different). Anesthesia with propofol was accompanied by a moderate but significant respiratory depression and a decrease in PCV and total protein. Conclusions and clinical relevance: Prolonged anesthesia with propofol in healthy cats may be associated with a delayed recovery.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)2-7
Number of pages6
JournalVeterinary Anaesthesia and Analgesia
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006


  • Anesthesia
  • Cats
  • Infusions
  • Propofol
  • Recovery

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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