Evaluation of fresh frozen plasma administration in dogs with pancreatitis: 77 cases (1995-2005)

J Vet Emerg Crit Care (San Antonio). 2009 Dec;19(6):617-22. doi: 10.1111/j.1476-4431.2009.00483.x.


Objective: Compare outcome of dogs that did and did not receive fresh frozen plasma (FFP) for treatment of pancreatitis.

Design: Retrospective case series between 1995 and 2005.

Setting: University referral hospital.

Animals: Seventy-four dogs were enrolled with a total of 77 cases as 2 dogs had repeat episodes of pancreatitis. Diagnosis of pancreatitis was based on clinical signs, physical examination, and abdominal ultrasonographic examination.

Interventions: The medical database was searched for dogs with a diagnosis of pancreatitis. Information collected included signalment, vital signs, CBC, use of FFP, length of stay, use of antimicrobials and supplemental nutrition, surgical intervention, preexisting illness, evidence of a coagulopathy and outcome. Outcome was compared between those patients that did and did not receive FFP.

Measurements and main results: Fifty-nine dogs survived to discharge. Two dogs with repeat pancreatitis survived to discharge after each episode. Thirteen dogs died and 2 were euthanized. FFP was administered to 20 dogs. Two dogs that were hospitalized for repeat pancreatitis did not receive FFP. Seven of 20 (35%) cases that received plasma died or were euthanized compared with 6 of 57 (12%) cases that did not receive plasma. Plasma administration was significantly related to outcome (P<0.001). Severity of illness scores were difficult to assign, however, dogs meeting criteria for systemic inflammatory response syndrome were not more likely to receive FFP. Other therapies included supplemental nutrition, antimicrobials, and surgical intervention, which did not affect outcome.

Conclusions: Mortality rate for those dogs receiving plasma was higher than those that did not. Severity of illness scores were difficult to assign; however, preexisting illness, evidence of systemic inflammatory response syndrome, and presence of a coagulopathy were not significantly different between the groups that did and did not receive FFP. No benefit for administration of FFP was noted. Additional investigation should be performed to confirm this result.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Evaluation Study

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Blood Component Transfusion / methods
  • Blood Component Transfusion / veterinary*
  • Databases, Factual
  • Dog Diseases / diagnosis
  • Dog Diseases / epidemiology*
  • Dog Diseases / therapy*
  • Dogs
  • Euthanasia, Animal
  • Female
  • Iowa
  • Length of Stay
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Pancreatitis / diagnosis
  • Pancreatitis / epidemiology
  • Pancreatitis / therapy
  • Pancreatitis / veterinary*
  • Plasma*
  • Risk Factors
  • Schools, Veterinary
  • Survival Analysis
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome / diagnosis
  • Systemic Inflammatory Response Syndrome / veterinary
  • Treatment Outcome