Many of the drugs used in veterinary anesthesia cause severe depression of the cardiovascular system, and this system must be monitored during anesthesia and recovery. Several techniques as well a variety of monitoring devices can be used. The important question is, "Is circulation or perfusion of tissues with blood adequate to meet the tissues' metabolic needs?" Taking the pulse can be used to determine whether and how fast the animal's heart is beating. However, it is not an accurate indicator of mean blood pressure or perfusion. Peripheral perfusion is better when the mucous membranes are bright pink as opposed to when they are pale. Other techniques of monitoring anesthesia will be discussed. Monitoring devices will be reviewed, including ways to monitor blood pressure, respiration, and capnea. Because most clinics don't have the means to measure cardiac output or blood gases, it is important to know what other techniques can be used.

-American College of Veterinary Anesthesiology session/sponsored by Abbott Animal Health, North Chicago, IL