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  • Author or Editor: S. H. Curry x
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A specific, sensitive, reverse-phase high-performance liquid chromatographic assay for acepromazine, with analytic sensitivity as low as 5 ng/ml of plasma, and electrochemical detection with an oxidation potential of 0.7 V, was used to study the pharmacokinetics of acepromazine given at a dosage of 0.15 mg/kg of body weight in horses. The relation between effect and pharmacokinetics of the drug was examined. The effects studied included those on blood pressure, pulse, pcv, measures of respiration function, and sedation. Intravenously administered doses led to a biphasic concentration decay pattern with an α-phase distribution half-life of < 3 minutes. The β-phase half-life was in the range of 50 to 150 minutes. The cns effects peaked at 20 minutes after administration, and the hemodynamic effects peaked at 100 minutes. In all horses, the most sensitive variable was the pcv, which decreased by up to 20% (P < 0.0001). Systolic, diastolic, and mean blood pressures decreased (P < 0.0001); heart rate was unchanged (P > 0.05). Neither blood gas tensions nor blood pH changed noticeably (P > 0.05). In all horses studied, acepromazine had a significant (P < 0.0001) sedative effect, as observed by posture and alertness. None of the observed pharmacodynamic effects correlated well with plasma acepromazine concentration. These effects persisted beyond the time of detectable acepromazine concentration, indicating that they might be caused by active metabolites, or that their timing could result from complex pharmacokinetic compartment influences.

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in American Journal of Veterinary Research