2628: The Effects of Acupuncture, Electroacupuncture and Transcutaneous Cranial Electrical Stimulation on Isoflurane Requirements in Dogs: A Comparative Study

Grant Status: Closed

Grant Amount: $21,600
Roman T. Skarda, DVM, PhD; Ohio State University
January 1, 2003 - December 31, 2004

Sponsor(s): Helen Chrysler Greene, Miniature Pinscher Club of America, Inc., Westie Foundation of America, Inc.

Breed(s): -All Dogs
Research Program Area: Musculoskeletal Conditions and Disease
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This randomized study should demonstrate that acupuncture, electroacupuncture (EA), and transcutaneous cranial electrical stimulation (TCES) significantly reduce the minimum alveolar concentration of isoflurane (MAC-ISO) and release the neurochemical beta-endorphin, to produce a sparing of isoflurane and post-anesthetic pain relief. Isoflurane is the most popular and commonly used inhalation anesthetic in dogs. Non-pharmacological therapy such as acupuncture, EA and TCES on MAC-ISO reduction and post-anesthetic analgesia in dogs, surprisingly, has not been investigated. A direct comparison of acupuncture, EA and TCES on isoflurane-sparing effects will demonstrate which of the three techniques is the most effective for reducing MAC-ISO. Electroacupuncture and TCES are expected to be more potent to reduce MAC-ISO than acupuncture. There are substantial benefits from minimizing the necessary concentration of isoflurane for general anesthesia, such as increased safety of anesthesia, reduced amount of waste anesthetic gases, minimal pollution of the environment, decreased toxic by-products of anesthetic gases (carbon monoxide, inorganic fluoride), and reduced cost of inhalation anesthesia. We will determine the plasma concentration of beta-endorphins and respiratory and cardiovascular effects of acupuncture, EA and TCES in healthy dogs during and after administration of isoflurane.


Culp, L. B., Skarda, R. T., & Muir III, W. W. (2005). Comparisons of the effects of acupuncture, electroacupuncture, and transcutaneous cranial electrical stimulation on the minimum alveolar concentration of isoflurane in dogs. American Journal of Veterinary Research, 66(8), 1364–1370. https://doi.org/10.2460/ajvr.2005.66.1364

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