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Evaluation of the effects of methadone and tramadol on postoperative analgesia and serum interleukin-6 in dogs undergoing orthopaedic surgery

Cardozo, Larissa B, Cotes, Lourenço C, Kahvegian, Marcia A P, Rizzo, Maria Fernanda C I, Otsuki, Denise A, Ferrigno, Cassio R A, Fantoni, Denise T
BMC veterinary research 2014 v.10 no.1 pp. 194
analgesia, blood pressure, blood serum, dogs, gender, heart, heart rate, interleukin-6, ligaments, methadone, pain, patients, quality of life, respiratory rate, risk, sedation, surgery
BACKGROUND: Acute postsurgical pain is of great interest due to potential risk of becoming chronic if not treated properly, worsening patient’s recovery and quality of life. Twenty-eight dogs with ruptured cruciate ligaments were divided into three groups that received intramuscular injections of 4 mg/kg of tramadol (TRA), 0.5 mg/kg of methadone (MET0.5), or 0.7 mg/kg of methadone (MET0.7). Physiological parameters (heart and respiratory rates and blood pressure) were evaluated at specified times: baseline (TBL), 1 (T1), 2 (T2), 4 (T4), 6 (T6), and 24 (T24) hours after premedication. Pain scores were described by visual analogue scale (VAS), modified Glasgow Composite, and Colorado University Acute Pain scales. Blood samples for measurement of interleukin (IL)-6 were collected at TBL, T1, T6, and T24. This was a prospective, randomised investigation to evaluate the efficacy of tramadol and methadone as premedications in dogs undergoing osteotomies. RESULTS: There were no statistically significant differences between groups with respect to age, weight, gender, surgery time, and time to extubation. Heart rate, respiratory rate, and blood pressure values were maintained within acceptable ranges, and a reduction was observed at T2 in MET0.5 and MET0.7 compared with TBL. Increases in VAS scores were observed in TRA at T4 compared with TBL, T1, and T24 and between T1 and T6 (p < 0.001). In MET0.5, there was significant increase in VAS score at T4 compared with T1 (p < 0.001). TRA and MET0.5 showed significantly higher mean ± SD VAS scores (3.4 ± 2.5 and 2.5 ± 2.6, respectively) than MET0.7 (1.1 ± 1.5) at T4 (p < 0.001). TRA showed greater demand of rescue analgesia (four animals in T4 and two in T6) (p < 0.037). There were no statistically significant differences in sedation scores, Colorado Scale scores, or interleukin levels between groups and time points. CONCLUSIONS: Methadone given as premedication in doses of 0.7 mg/kg was better at controlling pain compared with lower doses and tramadol. However, dosage increases, administered as rescue analgesia, promoted adequate pain control even in tramadol group. Influence of these analgesics on IL-6 release could not be demonstrated, but significant levels were not found.