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Etorphine-halothane anaesthesia in two five-year-old African elephants (Loxodonta africana) : clinical communication

G.F. Stegmann
Journal of the South African Veterinary Association | Vol 70, No 4 | a789 | DOI: | © 1999 G.F. Stegmann | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 12 July 1999 | Published: 12 July 1999

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Anaesthesia of 2 five-year-old femaleAfrican elephants (Loxodonta africana) was required for dental surgery. The animals were each premedicated with 120 mg of azaperone 60 min before transportation to the hospital. Before offloading, 1 mg etorphine was administered intramuscularly (i.m.) to each elephant to facilitate walking them to the equine induction / recovery room. For induction, 2 mg etorphine was administered i.m. to each animal. Induction was complete within 6 min. Surgical anaesthesia was induced with halothane-in-oxygen after intubation of the trunk. During surgery the mean heart rate was 61 and 45 beats / min respectively. Systolic blood pressures increased to 27.5 and 25.6 kPa respectively, and were treated with intravenous azaperone. Blood pressure decreased thereafter to a mean systolic pressure of 18.1 and 19.8 kPa, respectively. Rectal temperature was 35.6 and 33.9 oC at the onset of surgery, and decreased to 35.3 and 33.5 oC, respectively, at the end of anaesthesia. Etorphine anaesthesia was reversed with 5mg diprenorphine at the completion of 90 min of surgery.


Anaesthesia; Azaperone; Elephant; Etorphine; Halothane; Loxodonta Africana


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