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Antagonism of detomidine sedation in the horse using intravenous tolazoline or atipamezole.

Author(s): Hubbell JA, Muir WW

Affiliation(s): Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, Ohio State University, 601 Tharp Street, Columbus, Ohio 43210, USA.

Publication date & source: 2006-05, Equine Vet J., 38(3):238-41.

Publication type: Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

REASONS FOR PERFORMING STUDY: The ability to shorten the duration of sedation would potentially improve safety and utility of detomidine. OBJECTIVES: To determine the effects of tolazoline and atipamezole after detomidine sedation. HYPOTHESIS: Administration of tolazoline or atipamezole would not affect detomidine sedation. METHODS: In a randomised, placebo-controlled, double-blind, descriptive study, detomidine (0.02 mg/kg bwt i.v.) was administered to 6 mature horses on 4 separate occasions. Twenty-five mins later, each horse received one of 4 treatments: Group 1 saline (0.9% i.v.) as a placebo control; Group 2 atipamezole (0.05 mg/kg bwt i.v.); Group 3 atipamezole (0.1 mg/kg bwt i.v.); and Group 4 tolazoline (4.0 mg/kg bwt i.v.). Sedation, muscle relaxation and ataxia were scored by 3 independent observers at 9 time points. Horses were led through an obstacle course at 7 time points. Course completion time was recorded and the ability of the horse to traverse the course was scored by 3 independent observers. Horses were videotaped before, during and after each trip through the obstacle course. RESULTS: Atipamezole and tolazoline administration incompletely antagonised the effects of detomidine, but the time course to recovery was shortened. CONCLUSIONS AND POTENTIAL RELEVANCE: Single bolus administration of atipamezole or tolazoline produced partial reversal of detomidine sedation and may be useful for minimising detomidine sedation.

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