Journal of
Cell and Animal Biology

  • Abbreviation: J. Cell Anim. Biol.
  • Language: English
  • ISSN: 1996-0867
  • DOI: 10.5897/JCAB
  • Start Year: 2007
  • Published Articles: 262

Full Length Research Paper

Changes in the haematological profile of the West African hinge-backed Tortoise (Kinixys erosa) anaesthetized with ether or thiopentone sodium

Saba, A. B* and Oridupa, O.A
Department of Veterinary Physiology, Biochemistry and Pharmacology, University of Ibadan, Ibadan Nigeria.
Email: [email protected], [email protected]

  •  Accepted: 17 September 2010
  •  Published: 30 November 2010


The effect of ether or thiopentone sodium on haematological parameters of tortoise was determined by evaluating the Packed Cell Volume (PCV), Red Blood Cell (RBC) count, Haemoglobin (Hb) concentration, Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin Concentration (MCHC), Mean Corpuscular Volume (MCV), Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin (MCH) and White Blood Cell (WBC) count of ether or thiopentone-anaesthetized West African Hinge-Backed Tortoise (Kinixys erosa). The blood clotting and sleeping time were also determined. Fifteen tortoises were randomly but equally divided into three groups. Tortoises in Group I were administered with 0.9% Physiological saline, while tortoises in Group II and III were administered with ether and thiopentone sodium respectively. Ether was administered by inhalation while thiopentone sodium was administered intramuscularly. The sleeping time was significantly longer for ether than for thiopentone sodium. The difference in the sleeping time is ascribed to the differences in the physicochemical, pharmacokinetic or pharmacodynamic properties of the two anaesthetics. Blood clotting was delayed in tortoises anaesthetized with ether compared with thiopentone-anaesthetized tortoises, which makes thiopentone a more reliable anaesthetic agent for invasive surgical procedures in the tortoise than ether. The two anaesthetics elicited depression of the haematological parameters of the tortoises with significant (P<0.05) decreases in the PCV and RBC values. Hb concentration and MCV were significantly decreased for ether-anaesthetized tortoises, while MCH was significantly decreased for thiopentone-anaesthetized tortoises. The WBC count was elevated in ether-administered tortoises while the value decreased in thiopentone-administered tortoises. The elevation of WBC count was attributed to the irritant effect of ether. It was concluded that ether or thiopentone caused depression of haematological parameters in West African Hinge-Backed tortoise which should be taken into consideration when interpreting values of blood parameters obtained from anaesthetized subjects.


Key words: Ether, thiopentone sodium, haematology, sleeping time, West African hinge-backed tortoise.