Multiparametric analysis is an increasingly common approach used in veterinary diagnostics. It involves measuring a range of parameters during each phase of a surgical procedure. This enables surgeons to closely monitor patients throughout surgery and make treatment decisions based on real-life data.

In this post, we are going to discuss what multiparametric analysis is, how veterinarians can use multiparameter monitors, and what the advantages and disadvantages of this technology are. 


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What Is Multiparametric Analysis?

Let’s start with a basic definition. Multiparameter means measuring more than one variable. In other words, collecting data from a variety of sources in order to analyse multiple perspectives and gain a more comprehensive understanding.

In the field of medicine, multiparametric analysis involves collecting data from a range of medical inputs in order to make an accurate diagnosis. For example, when you visit the doctor with a complaint, they might conduct a number of tests in order to analyse the bigger picture and determine what is wrong. This might include blood tests, a temperature check, urine tests, and scans. Then, using this data, a doctor can make a reasonable diagnosis based on hard facts.   

Multiparametric analysis is also often used by anaesthetists during surgery in order to monitor a patient’s vital statistics before, during, and after an operation. This is usually done using a multiparameter monitoring device which can provide valuable real-time data relating to the condition of a patient. 

Using a multiparameter monitor during induction, maintenance, and recovery from anaesthesia provides much-needed information about cardiopulmonary status and function and can often allow an anaesthetist to anticipate and prevent problems. Devices can alert them of issues such as irregular heart rates, arrhythmias, hypoventilation, systemic vasodilation, respiratory acidosis, and hypoxemia. A decision can then be made as to the most suitable course of action: continue with surgery or adjust treatment.  


What Is a Multiparameter Monitor?

Multiparametric analysis is usually conducted using a multiparameter monitor. This is a device used to monitor a patient’s vital signs, and it is mainly used in intensive care, hospitalisation, or the ER. Devices can be used to monitor cardiac activity (ECG), blood pressure (NIBP), respiration (RESP), oxygen saturation (SpO2), and temperature (TEMP).

Multiparameter monitors show a range of vital stats on a single display, providing medical professionals with valuable data to help them understand the condition of the patient. Careful use of electronic monitoring equipment, in addition to the manual skills offered by the clinician, allows for a high standard of patient care during surgery.

A multiparameter monitor can be used as a stand-alone device, or it can be connected to a central patient monitoring station. This can be useful in a hospital setting as healthcare teams are able to monitor and measure the vital signs of all connected patients from a centralised location.


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How Can Veterinarians Use Multiparametric Analysis?

Multiparametric analysis has been used in human healthcare for some time now. However, this technology is now being introduced into the field of veterinary medicine. This provides veterinarians with insight into the health and wellbeing of animals during surgery, enabling them to provide an enhanced level of care.

Multiparameter monitors can be used by veterinarians to detect:

  • Heart issues: Heart complications such as arrhythmias are relatively common during veterinary surgery, but they can also be difficult to detect without ECG monitoring. Multiparametric analysis can alert surgeons and anaesthetists to potential issues like cardiac dysrhythmias. Multiparameter monitors that include special algorithms for measuring ECG in animals take this a step further as they are adjusted for animal QRS complex, which differs significantly from human QRS complex.
  • Undetected conditions: Occasionally, a veterinary surgeon might encounter an undetected condition whilst operating on an animal. By using a device for multiparametric analysis, the patient gets an extra layer of protection in addition to pre-operative checks and examinations. If an undetected condition results in complications during surgery, a multiparameter monitor can provide valuable data that can be used to determine whether or not to continue with the surgery.


Advantages and Disadvantages

There are a number of advantages of using multiparametric analysis during veterinary surgery. The biggest and most obvious benefit is that monitors can provide valuable insight during surgery which can help with making decisions and determining the right course of action when complications arise.

However, despite their accuracy, multiparameter monitors cannot replace the added benefits obtained from the hands-on evaluation of surgical patients, particularly in terms of the depth of anaesthesia, including eye position and palpebral responses, jaw and muscle tone, and response to stimuli. What’s more, devices usually require adequate training, ideally carried out by the manufacturer.

Nonetheless, multiparametric analysis is fast becoming a vital component of veterinary surgical care. The ability to have access to real-time data relating to cardiopulmonary function is critical to the safe delivery of anaesthesia in patients. Veterinarians gain increasing awareness of the wellbeing of patients before, during, and after surgery, helping them avert crises, save more lives, and obtain better patient outcomes


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