Effect of continuous intravenous administration of a 50% dextrose solution on phosphorus homeostasis in dairy cows

Walter Grünberg, Dawn E. Morin, James K. Drackley, Anne M. Barger, Peter D. Constable

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective-To determine the effect of continuous IV administration of 50% dextrose solution on phosphorus homeostasis in lactating dairy cows. Design-Clinical trial. Animals-4 multiparous Jersey cows. Procedures-Cows were administered 50% dextrose solution IV (0.3 g/kg/h [0.14 g/lb/h]) for 5 days. Plasma concentrations of glucose, immune-reactive insulin (IRI), and phosphorus were determined before, during, and for 72 hours after dextrose infusion. Phosphorus intake and losses of phosphorus in urine, feces, and milk were determined. Each cow received a sham treatment that included instrumentation and sampling but not administration of dextrose. Results-Plasma glucose, IRI, and phosphorus concentrations were stable during sham treatment. Plasma phosphorus concentration decreased rapidly after onset of dextrose infusion, reaching a nadir in 24 hours and remaining less than baseline value for 36 hours. Plasma phosphorus concentration increased after dextrose infusion was stopped, peaking in 6 hours. Urinary phosphorus excretion did not change during dextrose infusion, but phosphorus intake decreased because of reduced feed intake, followed by decreased fecal phosphorus loss and milk yield. Rapid changes in plasma phosphorus concentration at the start and end of dextrose infusion were temporally associated with changes in plasma glucose and IRI concentrations and most likely caused by compartmental shifts of phosphorus. Conclusions and Clinical Relevance-Hypophosphatemia developed in response to hyperglycemia or hyperinsulinemia in dairy cows administered dextrose via continuous IV infusion. Veterinarians should monitor plasma phosphorus concentration when administering dextrose in this manner, particularly in cows with decreased appetite or preexisting hypophosphatemia.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-420
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the American Veterinary Medical Association
Issue number3
StatePublished - Aug 1 2006

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • veterinary(all)


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