Pharmacokinetics and efficacy of orally administered acetaminophen (paracetamol) in adult horses with experimentally induced endotoxemia


Background: Acetaminophen has been evaluated in horses for treatment of musculoskeletal pain but not as an antipyretic. Objectives: To determine the pharmacokinetics and efficacy of acetaminophen compared to placebo and flunixin meglumine in adult horses with experimentally induced endotoxemia. Animals: Eight university owned research horses with experimentally induced endotoxemia. Methods: Randomized placebo controlled crossover study. Horses were treated with acetaminophen (30 mg/kg PO; APAP), flunixin meglumine (1.1 mg/kg, PO; FLU), and placebo (PO; PLAC) 2 hours after administration of LPS. Plasma APAP was analyzed via LC-MS/MS. Serial CBC, lactate, serum amyloid A, heart rate and rectal temperature were evaluated. Serum IL-1β, IL-6, IL-8, IL-10, and TNF-α were evaluated by an equine-specific multiplex assay. Results: Mean maximum plasma APAP concentration was 13.97 ± 2.74 μg/mL within 0.6 ± 0.3 hour after administration. At 4 and 6 hours after treatment, both APAP (P = <.001, P =.03, respectively) and FLU (P =.0045 and P <.001, respectively) had a significantly greater decrease in rectal temperature compared to placebo. FLU caused greater heart rate reduction than APAP at 4 and 6 hours (P =.004 and P =.04), and PLAC at 4 hours (P =.05) after treatment. Conclusions and Clinical Importance: The pharmacokinetics of acetaminophen in endotoxemic horses differ from those reported by previous studies in healthy horses. Acetaminophen is an option for antipyresis in clinical cases, particularly when administration of traditional NSAIDs is contraindicated.

acetaminophen, fever, horse, pyrexia, 3009 Veterinary Sciences, 30 Agricultural, Veterinary and Food Sciences, Infectious Diseases, Hematology, Clinical Research, Clinical Trials and Supportive Activities, Emerging Infectious Diseases, Brain Disorders, Sepsis, Digestive Diseases, 6.1 Pharmaceuticals, 6 Evaluation of treatments and therapeutic interventions