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Dexmedetomidine for Sedation & Analgesia in Cats

Slingsby, L.S., P.M. Taylor, and T. Monroe, Thermal antinociception after dexmedetomidine administration in cats: a comparison between intramuscular and oral transmucosal administration. J Feline Med Surg, 2009. 11(10): p. 829-34.

Dexmedetomidine belongs to a class of drugs called alpha-2 adrenergic receptor agonists. It has authorization for use as a sedative and premedication in dogs and cats in the United States and Europe (Dexdormitor; Pfizer, UK). The administration of dexmedetomidine causes dose dependent sedation and analgesia that may be reversed by the antagonist atipamezole (Antisedan; Pfizer, UK). In this randomized cross-over study of 12 cats, dexmedetomidine was administered either intramuscularly (IM) or oral transmucosally (OTM) at a dose of 40mcg/kg. Almost all the cats in this study vomited after dexmedetomidine administration. Cats were not fasted overnight prior to administration and this result would suggest fasting beforehand would be good practice. The OTM route provided equally good sedation and reduction in sensitivity to pain as the same dose administered IM. The researchers conclude that the OTM route of administration is a useful alternative to the IM route when administering dexmedetomidine to healthy cats. [VT]
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Related articles:
Granholm, M., et al., Evaluation of the clinical efficacy and safety of dexmedetomidine or medetomidine in cats and their reversal with atipamezole. Vet Anaesth Analg, 2006. 33(4): p. 214-23.
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Selmi, A., G. Mendes, and e. al, Evaluation of the sedative and cardiorespiratory effects of dexmedetomidine, dexmedetomidine-butorphanol, and dexmedetomidine-ketamine in cats. J Amer Vet Med Assoc, 2003. 222(1): p. 37-41.
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