Technical note: Influence of feed on image quality of abdominal ultrasonography in New Zealand white kits
The aim of this study was to evaluate the influence of feed change on image quality of ultrasound scanning of the gallbladder, kidney and jejunum in New Zealand White kits. Thirty-nine 35-day-old rabbits were used, distributed into 4 diet groups: C, only commercial feed; CH, commercial feed and hay; C24H, only commercial feed, replaced by hay 24 h before examination; and CH24H, commercial feed and hay, with the commercial feed withdrawn 24 h before the exam. The rabbits received the diet for 42 d (from 35 to 77 d of age) and the ultrasound evaluations were performed on days 56 and 77. Ultrasonographic assessment for image quality focused on the possibility of visualisation and an image quality rating (3 scores: unacceptable, acceptable or excellent) for the gallbladder, kidneys and jejunum. The kidneys were visualised in 100% of animals of all diets and ages. There was no difference in visualisation (P>0.05) of the gallbladder among the animals fed different diets on days 56 and 77. The C24H diet had a higher visualisation possibility (P<0.05) of the jejunum compared to the C and CH diets on day 77. For the image quality score, there was no difference in the studied organs on day 56. However, on day 77, there was a difference for the jejunum (P<0.05), and only the C24H and CH24H diets presented images classified as excellent. In conclusion, the image quality of the kidneys and gallbladder was unaffected by feed, and the jejunum had an improved image quality with the inclusion of hay and without the commercial feed 24 h before the test in New Zealand White rabbits at 77 d of age.
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