A method is described of bleeding dogs under anaesthesia with ethylene (79 per cent) and oxygen (21 per cent) to an arbitrary level of hypotension. Arterial blood oxygen saturations remained normal while the hyperventilation of the animals in response to haemorrhage was unimpaired. In dogs rendered hypotensive by 30-50 per cent reductions of their circulating blood volume, halothane caused a fall, and di-ethyl ether a rise in the arterial blood pressure, heart rate and respiratory minute volume. Venous pressure fell further on administration of halothane. Acute experiments in dogs bled to a mean blood pressure of 50 mm Hg did not distinguish a lethal effect of halothane due to its hypotensive action. Increasing the severity of the bleeding procedure demonstrated the lethal effect of impairing the hyperventilation with halothane in air which caused marked arterial desaturation. Survival experiments might demonstrate a deleterious effect of halothane due to its hypotensive action in severe haemorrhage when compared with ether anaesthesia. Preliminary survival experiments are reported.
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