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Postoperative pain control in cats: clinical trials with pre-emptive lidocaine epidural co-administered with morphine or methadone

DeRossi, Rafael, Hermeto, Larissa Correa, Jardim, Paulo Henrique Affonseca, de Andrade Bicudo, Natalia, de Assis, Klebs Tavares
analgesia, anesthesia, anesthetics, blood pressure, cats, clinical trials, heart rate, lidocaine, methadone, morphine, pain, spaying, temperature
The aim of the study was to evaluate the effectiveness of epidural lidocaine in combination with either methadone or morphine for postoperative analgesia in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy. Under general anesthesia, 24 cats that underwent ovariohysterectomy were randomly allocated into three treatment groups of eight each. Treatment 1 included 2% lidocaine (4.0 mg/kg); treatment 2 included lidocaine and methadone (4.0 mg/kg and 0.3 mg/kg, respectively); and treatment 3 included lidocaine and morphine (4.0 mg/kg and 0.1 mg/kg, respectively). All drugs were injected in a total volume of 0.25 ml/kg via the lumbosacral route in all cats. During the anesthetic and surgical periods, the physiologic variables (respiratory and heart rate, arterial blood pressure and rectal temperature) were measured at intervals of time zero, 10 mins, 20 mins, 30 mins, 60 mins and 120 mins. After cats had recovered from anesthesia, a multidimensional composite pain scale was used to assess postoperative analgesia 2, 4, 8, 12, 18 and 24 h after epidural. The time to first rescue analgesic was significantly (P <0.05) prolonged in cats that received both lidocaine and methadone or lidocaine and morphine treatments compared with those that received lidocaine treatment alone. All cats that received lidocaine treatment alone required rescue analgesic within 2 h of epidural injections. All treatments produced significant cardiovascular and respiratory changes but they were within an acceptable range for healthy animals during the surgical period. The two combinations administered via epidural allowed ovariohysterectomy with sufficient analgesia in cats, and both induced prolonged postoperative analgesia.