Evaluation of Non-Invasive Blood Pressure Measurement Techniques via the Coccygeal Artery in Anesthetized Cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus)
American Association of Zoo Veterinarians Conference 2012

Ryan Sadler1, DVM; Natalie H. Hall2, DVM; Philip H. Kass1, DVM, PhD; Scott Citino2, DVM, DACZM

1University of California Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, Davis, CA, USA; 2White Oak Conservation Center, Yulee, FL, USA


Captive cheetah populations are affected by hypertension-related diseases, and accurate measurement of blood pressure can be a vital tool for detection, monitoring response to treatment, and tracking disease progression.1-3 Indirect blood pressure measurement by Doppler sphygmomanometry and oscillometry at the ventral coccygeal artery was compared to simultaneous direct blood pressure measurement at the dorsal pedal artery in captive anesthetized cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus). Systolic arterial pressure (SAP) obtained via Doppler sphygmomanometry and mean arterial pressure (MAP) obtained via oscillometry had the greatest agreement with simultaneous direct SAP and MAP measurements. Systolic and diastolic arterial pressure (DAP) measurements obtained via oscillometry had less agreement with simultaneous direct SAP and DAP measurements. Both indirect techniques exhibited trends that correlated with the trends of direct blood pressure measurements over a wide interval of arterial pressures. In a clinical setting, indirect blood pressure measurement via the ventral coccygeal artery may be useful for assessing trends in a cheetah patient, but caution should be taken when interpreting individual values. A cheetah’s medical history, current clinical condition, and anesthetic protocol should be considered to determine whether indirect or direct blood pressure monitoring techniques are most appropriate.


The authors thank the staff of White Oak Conservation Center for their assistance with the care of these animals.

Literature Cited

1.  Bolton, L.A. and L. Munson. 1999. Glomerulosclerosis in captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus). Vet Pathol. 36: 14–22.

2.  Brown, S., C. Atkins, R. Bagley, A. Carr, L. Cowgill, M. Davidson, B. Egner, J. Elliott, R. Henik, M. Labato, M. Littman, D. Polzin, L. Ross, P. Snyder and R. Stepien. 2007. Guidelines for the identification, evaluation, and management of systemic hypertension in dogs and cats. J Vet Intern Med. 21: 542-558.

3.  Munson, L., J.W. Nesbit, D.G. Meltzer, L.P. Colly, L. Bolton and N.P. Kriek. 1999. Diseases of captive cheetahs (Acinonyx jubatus jubatus) in South Africa: a 20-year retrospective survey. J Zoo Wildl Med. 30: 342–347.


Speaker Information
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Ryan Sadler, DVM
University of California-Davis
School of Veterinary Medicine
Davis, CA, USA

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