Influence of ruminal insufflation on pulmonary function and diaphragmatic electromyography in cattle.
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In 8 healthy, awake cows with permanent cannulated ruminal fistulas and carotid artery loops, respiratory mechanics, ventilation, and diaphragmatic electrical activity were studied before and during stepwise insufflation of the rumen with air pressure to 40 mm of Hg. We found that ruminal insufflation increased intraperitoneal, intrapleural, and transdiaphragmatic pressures and decreased lung volume and lung compliance. In individual cows with rumen insufflation there was an increase in pulmonary resistance, but this trend was not significant in the group. Peak expiratory flow rate was increased and peak inspiratory flow rate was unchanged. Inspiratory duration (Ti) decidal volume decreased slightly, breathing frequency decreased markedly, and minute volume decreased. When intraruminal pressure reached 40 mm of Hg, arterial partial pressure of carbon dioxide (PaCO2) increased (P less than 0.01) and that of oxygen (PaO2) decreased (P less than 0,01) and arterial blood pH decreased (P less than 0.02). Diaphragmatic electromyographic activity was increased, but mechanical effectiveness of the diaphragm was reduced at increased intraruminal pressures.