In veterinary clinics, it is common to find different types of tools, from the stethoscope to the electrocardiogram. However, in recent years, new tools have emerged that have surpassed and replaced some of the others and improved the internal processes of veterinary clinics.
One of these tools is the multiparametric monitor, an instrument that allows veterinarians to monitor the key health indicators of their patients in real time. But, what is it and what are its main benefits? Is it worth having a multiparametric monitor in your veterinary clinic? Are there other more suitable options? In this article, we will share the answers to all these questions.
What Is a Veterinary Multiparametric Monitor?
The multiparametric monitor is a veterinary device whose function is to monitor a patient’s vital signs. It is commonly used in hospitals, the ICU or in specialised centres, since it is mainly used in operations requiring anaesthesia or in the monitoring of unstable patients.
There are different types of multiparametric monitors on the market, from the compact to the modular. With compact monitors, basic monitoring is possible. However, depending on the needs of the clinic, it is possible to expand their functions to have a more complete picture of the animal’s health status. The choice will depend on the level of detail that is needed.
Main Advantages and Disadvantages of the Multiparametric Monitor
The main advantage of this tool is the very precise way that it is able to monitor an animal’s vitals. This makes it possible for vets to perform operations knowing that they have control over the situation, and are able to accurately monitor the patient’s condition.
However, in order to be able to use it, it’s necessary to use tools that are in contact with the animal, such as forceps, for example. In case the animal moves, this may cause some difficulties with the monitoring. Even so, it is just a momentary discomfort and a much more comfortable option than the usual manual monitoring techniques.
The main disadvantage of having a multiparametric monitor is its high price, which is usually around several thousand euros (between 3,000 and 6,000 euros for the most affordable ones). Not all veterinary clinics can afford such a high initial cost, and may wonder if it is really worth making this investment. Having other types of tools with similar functions can be of great help to reduce the costs of the clinic and continue offering an excellent service.
Complementary Options to the Monitor
An ideal complementary tool to the monitor is the multiparametric harness. This type of device is great for clinics that need to monitor a patient’s vitals during routine operations (such as spaying or cleaning the patient’s teeth), where it is not necessary to handle the part of the animal covered by the harness.
Moreover, the harness is not only a more economical option than the multiparametric monitor. It is also useful for other routine tasks, such as taking the patient’s heart rate or postoperative monitoring. It offers a much more extensive view of the animal’s recovery and, thanks to its wireless connection, it can collect data on the animal’s condition at different times of the day.
Despite these advantages, it should be noted that the harness will not be able to cover all the functions required for a complex operation. For example, it does not have the ability to monitor the patient’s carbon dioxide levels, which are usually monitored by placing a clamp on the animal’s tongue. It also does not have oxygen saturation monitoring, which is usually monitored with a pulse oximeter with a clamp on the animal’s tongue.
To Have or Not To Have a Multiparametric Monitor
Deciding whether or not to get a multiparametric monitor will depend on how you want to use it. If your clinic does not offer specialised operations, and if you perform minor elective procedures (dental cleanings, radiographs under sedation, etc.) it can be a good choice. Similarly, if you want to improve your post-surgical or post-sedation monitoring, it is possible that an economical, multipurpose option such as the harness is ideal for you.
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