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Comparison of oral and subcutaneous administration of buprenorphine and meloxicam for preemptive analgesia in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy

Adam D. Gassel DVM1, Karen M. Tobias DVM, MS, DACVS2, Christine M. Egger DVM, MVSc, DACVA3, and Barton W. Rohrbach VMD, MPH4
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  • 1 Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996-4544.
  • | 2 Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996-4544.
  • | 3 Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996-4544.
  • | 4 Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, TN 37996-4544.

Abstract

Objective—To compare the effectiveness of preoperative PO and SC administration of buprenorphine and meloxicam for prevention of postoperative pain-associated behaviors in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy.

Design—Randomized controlled study.

Animals—51 female cats (4 to 60 months old; weight range, 1.41 to 4.73 kg [3.1 to 10.4 lb]).

Procedure—Cats received 1 of 5 treatments at the time of anesthetic induction: buprenorphine PO (0.01 mg/kg [0.0045 mg/lb]; n = 10), buprenorphine SC (0.01 mg/kg; 10), meloxicam SC (0.3 mg/kg [0.14 mg/lb]; 10), meloxicam PO (0.3 mg/kg; 10), or 0.3 mL of sterile saline (0.9% NaCl) solution SC (control group; 11). Sedation scores and visual analog scale and interactive visual analog scale (IVAS) pain-associated behavior scores were assigned to each cat 2 hours before and at intervals until 20 hours after surgery.

Results—Cats receiving meloxicam PO or SC had significantly lower IVAS scores (2.91 and 2.02, respectively), compared with IVAS scores for cats receiving buprenorphine PO (7.55). Pain-associated behavior scores for cats administered buprenorphine or meloxicam PO or SC preoperatively did not differ significantly from control group scores. Rescue analgesia was not required by any of the cats receiving meloxicam, whereas 3 of 10 cats receiving buprenorphine PO, 2 of 10 cats receiving buprenorphine SC, and 1 of 11 cats receiving the control treatment required rescue analgesia.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—On the basis of pain-associated behavior scores, cats receiving meloxicam PO or SC before ovariohysterectomy appeared to have less pain after surgery than those receiving buprenorphine PO preoperatively. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;227:1937–1944)

Abstract

Objective—To compare the effectiveness of preoperative PO and SC administration of buprenorphine and meloxicam for prevention of postoperative pain-associated behaviors in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy.

Design—Randomized controlled study.

Animals—51 female cats (4 to 60 months old; weight range, 1.41 to 4.73 kg [3.1 to 10.4 lb]).

Procedure—Cats received 1 of 5 treatments at the time of anesthetic induction: buprenorphine PO (0.01 mg/kg [0.0045 mg/lb]; n = 10), buprenorphine SC (0.01 mg/kg; 10), meloxicam SC (0.3 mg/kg [0.14 mg/lb]; 10), meloxicam PO (0.3 mg/kg; 10), or 0.3 mL of sterile saline (0.9% NaCl) solution SC (control group; 11). Sedation scores and visual analog scale and interactive visual analog scale (IVAS) pain-associated behavior scores were assigned to each cat 2 hours before and at intervals until 20 hours after surgery.

Results—Cats receiving meloxicam PO or SC had significantly lower IVAS scores (2.91 and 2.02, respectively), compared with IVAS scores for cats receiving buprenorphine PO (7.55). Pain-associated behavior scores for cats administered buprenorphine or meloxicam PO or SC preoperatively did not differ significantly from control group scores. Rescue analgesia was not required by any of the cats receiving meloxicam, whereas 3 of 10 cats receiving buprenorphine PO, 2 of 10 cats receiving buprenorphine SC, and 1 of 11 cats receiving the control treatment required rescue analgesia.

Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—On the basis of pain-associated behavior scores, cats receiving meloxicam PO or SC before ovariohysterectomy appeared to have less pain after surgery than those receiving buprenorphine PO preoperatively. (J Am Vet Med Assoc 2005;227:1937–1944)