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Klee, Wolfgang (1980): Retrospective study of the correlation of serum potassium concentrations and the findings of heart auscultation in calves with neonatal diarrhea. Third International Symposium on Neonatal Diarrhea, 6. - 8. Oktober 1980, Saskatoon, Canada.


A retrospective study was conducted of clinical records of calves with neonatal diarrhea up to the age of 14 days concerning certain aspects of blood potassium concentration and heart rate and rhythm. No correlation could be found between heart rates and serum potassium concentrations. Bradycardia was no indicator of hyperkalemia, nor could hyperkalemia be ruled out in animals with tachycardia. Cardiac arrhythmias were not associated with pronounced kyperkalemia, and did not indicate a poor prognosis. It was concluded that, at least in clinical cases of neonatal calf diarrhea, heart rate and rhythm are subject to complex influences and yield no information on the actual serum potassium concentration in a particular animal.