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Tissue Residue Levels after Immobilization of Rocky Mountain Elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni) using a Combination of Nalbuphine, Medetomidine, and Azaperone Antagonized with Naltrexone, Atipamezole, and Tolazoline

Wolfe, Lisa L., Nol, Pauline, McCollum, Matthew P., Mays, Travis, Wehtje, Morgan E., Lance, William R., Fisher, Mark C., Miller, Michael W.
Journal of wildlife diseases 2018 v.54 no.2 pp. 362-365
Cervus canadensis nelsoni, adults, antagonists, azaperone, elks, liver, medetomidine, muscle tissues, muscles, tranquilizers
Previous studies demonstrated that nalbuphine, medetomidine, and azaperone (NalMed-A) can effectively immobilize adult elk (Cervus elaphus nelsoni), and be antagonized using naltrexone and atipamezole, with or without tolazoline. To assess duration of tissue residues for this immobilization package, we immobilized 14 captive adult elk with NalMed-A, then euthanized animals and collected tissues 0, 3, 6, 14, 21, or 28 d later. Except for two animals euthanized immediately, all elk were recovered using naltrexone, atipamezole, and tolazoline. Tissue residues (≥0.01 parts per million) for the tranquilizers nalbuphine, medetomidine, and azaperone were detected in liver and muscle tissue samples from elk euthanized within 40 min postinjection (PI) and one animal that died 12−24 h PI, but not in tissues from any of the animals euthanized at 3, 6, 14, 21, or 28 d PI. Tissue residues for the antagonists naltrexone, atipamezole, and tolazoline were detected in liver and muscle of the animal that died 12−24 h PI. Only naltrexone was detected in liver from the two elk euthanized at day 3, and no antagonist residues were detected thereafter.