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Continuous i.v. Infusion of Lidocaine for Treatment of Equine Ileus
Lidocaine is commonly used in dogs with gastric dilatation-volvulus-complex, a situation which can be compared with ileus in horses. It is often discussed if horses benefit from lidocaine infusions or not. This study has an excellent design: It is a prospective double-blinded placebo-controlled trial including 32 animals - and it gives a clear answer.

Horses (n=32) with a diagnosis of postoperative ileus (POI) or enteritis and that had refluxed >20 L or had been refluxing for >24 hours were included.

Refluxing horses were administered lidocaine (1.3 mg/kg intravenously [IV] as a bolus followed by a 0.05 mg/kg/min infusion) or saline (0.9% NaCl) solution placebo for 24 hours.

Variables evaluated included volume and duration of reflux, time to 1st fecal passage, signs of pain, analgesic use, heart rate and arrhythmias, respiratory rate, temperature, days of hospitalization, outcome (survival to discharge), and complications.

Results: Of the lidocaine-treated horses, 65% (11/17) stopped refluxing within 30 hours (mean±SD, 15.2±2.4 hours) whereas 27% (4/15) of the saline-treated horses stopped within 30 hours.

Fecal passage was significantly correlated with response to treatment; horses that responded to lidocaine passed feces within 16 hours of starting the infusion.

Compared with placebo treatment, lidocaine treatment resulted in shorter hospitalization time for survivors, equivalent survival to discharge, no clinically significant changes in physical or laboratory variables, and no difference in the rate of incisional infections, jugular thrombosis, laminitis, or diarrhea. Muscle fasciculations occurred in 3 lidocaine-treated horses (18%).

Conclusion: IV lidocaine significantly improved the clinical course in refluxing horses with minimal side effects. At the infusion rate studied, IV lidocaine is safe and should be considered for the treatment of equine ileus.


Source: MALONE, ERIN, ENSINK, JOS, TURNER, TRACY, WILSON, JULIE, ANDREWS, FRANK, KEEGAN, KEVIN & LUMSDEN, JONATHAN (2006): Intravenous Continuous Infusion of Lidocaine for Treatment of Equine Ileus. In: Veterinary Surgery 35 (1), 60-66.




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EQUINE

The farrier role in supporting horse owners to prevent laminitismembers
Emerging research highlights how, due to demographic changes in horse owner populations in Western societies, complex owner–horse relationships are leading to inappropriate horse care, including overnutrition, which in turn can lead to laminitis. Farriers, due to their regular visits, may be in a position to support owners in dealing with this problem. This study explored whether UK farriers have a role in working with horse owners to support horse welfare and prevent laminitis.

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