Comparison of antinociceptive, cardiovascular, and respiratory effects, head ptosis, and position of pelvic limbs in mares after caudal epidural administration of xylazine and detomidine hydrochloride solution

Roman T. Skarda From the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210-1089.

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 Dr med vet, PhD
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William W. Muir III From the Department of Veterinary Clinical Sciences, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 43210-1089.

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 DVM, PhD

Abstract

Objective

To examine and compare effects of 2α2- adrenergic receptor agonists, xylazine and detomidine, administered into the sacrococcygeal epidural space to induce safe and effective perineal analgesia on cardio-vascular and respiratory functions, head ptosis, and po-sition of pelvic limbs in healthy mares.

Animals

8 healthy mares.

Procedure

Blood samples were drawn and systemic hemodynamics were determined, including cardiac output and pulmonary arterial, systemic arterial, and right atrial pressures. Two-way ANOVA with repeated measures was used to detect significant (P < 0.05) differences between mean scores of perineal analgesia, cardiorespiratory variables, head ptosis, and position of pelvic limbs in mares before and during a 3-hour testing period. Analgesia was determined by lack of sensory perception to electrical stimulation at the perineal dermatome and no response to needle prick stimulation in dermatomes extending from the coccyx to T15. Avoidance responses to electrical current and needle prick stimulation and behavioral changes (head ptosis, position of pelvic limbs) were quantitatively assessed by use of a scoring system.

Results

Epidurally administered xylazine induced perineal analgesia and variable bilateral caudal analgesia extending from the coccyx to S3 dermatome, with minimal cardiovascular and respiratory depression, head ptosis, changes in position of pelvic limbs, and no urination in standing mares. Epidurally administered detomidine in-duced perineal analgesia, variable bilateral analgesia with dermatomal spread ranging from coccyx to S3 and coccyx to T15, with cardiovascular depression, marked head ptosis, changes in position of pelvic limbs, and diuresis in standing mares. Onset of perineal analgesia after xylazine and detomidine administrations was 13.1 ± 3.7 and 12.5 ± 2.7 minutes (mean ± SD), respectively. The period of perineal analgesia was significantly (P < 0.05) longer in mares after epidural xylazine administration than after epidural detomidine administration (165 to > 180 minutes vs 160 ± 8 minutes).

Conclusions

Caudal epidurally administered xylazine (0.25 mg/kg of body weight in 8 ml of 0.9% NaCI) offers the most desirable conditions in mares: long-term perineal analgesia (> 2.5 hours), with minimal cardiopulmonary depression, head ptosis, changes in pelvic limb position, and no urination in standing mares during a 3- hour test period. (Am J Vet Res 1996;57:1338-1345)

Abstract

Objective

To examine and compare effects of 2α2- adrenergic receptor agonists, xylazine and detomidine, administered into the sacrococcygeal epidural space to induce safe and effective perineal analgesia on cardio-vascular and respiratory functions, head ptosis, and po-sition of pelvic limbs in healthy mares.

Animals

8 healthy mares.

Procedure

Blood samples were drawn and systemic hemodynamics were determined, including cardiac output and pulmonary arterial, systemic arterial, and right atrial pressures. Two-way ANOVA with repeated measures was used to detect significant (P < 0.05) differences between mean scores of perineal analgesia, cardiorespiratory variables, head ptosis, and position of pelvic limbs in mares before and during a 3-hour testing period. Analgesia was determined by lack of sensory perception to electrical stimulation at the perineal dermatome and no response to needle prick stimulation in dermatomes extending from the coccyx to T15. Avoidance responses to electrical current and needle prick stimulation and behavioral changes (head ptosis, position of pelvic limbs) were quantitatively assessed by use of a scoring system.

Results

Epidurally administered xylazine induced perineal analgesia and variable bilateral caudal analgesia extending from the coccyx to S3 dermatome, with minimal cardiovascular and respiratory depression, head ptosis, changes in position of pelvic limbs, and no urination in standing mares. Epidurally administered detomidine in-duced perineal analgesia, variable bilateral analgesia with dermatomal spread ranging from coccyx to S3 and coccyx to T15, with cardiovascular depression, marked head ptosis, changes in position of pelvic limbs, and diuresis in standing mares. Onset of perineal analgesia after xylazine and detomidine administrations was 13.1 ± 3.7 and 12.5 ± 2.7 minutes (mean ± SD), respectively. The period of perineal analgesia was significantly (P < 0.05) longer in mares after epidural xylazine administration than after epidural detomidine administration (165 to > 180 minutes vs 160 ± 8 minutes).

Conclusions

Caudal epidurally administered xylazine (0.25 mg/kg of body weight in 8 ml of 0.9% NaCI) offers the most desirable conditions in mares: long-term perineal analgesia (> 2.5 hours), with minimal cardiopulmonary depression, head ptosis, changes in pelvic limb position, and no urination in standing mares during a 3- hour test period. (Am J Vet Res 1996;57:1338-1345)

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