Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Anesthesia: analgesia - overview

Contributor(s): Kate Baker, Dennis R Gieser, Craig Johnson, Mark Senior

Introduction

Why is pain control necesssary in the horse?
 
  • Pain causes suffering.
  • Pain causes a patient to become anorexic and mount a stress response. These factors will delay recovery and wound healing Wound: healing - factors.
  • It may cause self-mutilation Behavior: self-mutilation resulting in further wounds and more pain.
  • Post-operative pain causes prolonged recoveries, longer recumbencies and increased likelihood of post-operative complications.
  • Uncontrolled pain will result in chronic pain.

Pain is not a good or ethical technique for restricting movement.

Definitions

  • Pain perception = an unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage or described in terms of such damage. Note: the inability to communicate in no way negates the possibility that an indicidual is experiencing pain and is in need of appropriate pain relieving treatment.
  • Inflammatory visceral pain = thoracic and abdominal visceral pain; poorly localized, undulating in severity and may be referred to cutaneous sites.
  • Inflammatory somatic = skin, joint, muscle or periosteal pain; localized, throbbing, acute; may be superficial or deep.
  • Neuropathic pain = damage to peripheral or spinal nervous tissue; burning stabbing sensation; may be unresponsive to treatment.
  • Idiopathic pain = no recognizable organic cause; may be exaggerated and exacerbated by stress (fear or excitement).
Print off the Owner factsheet All about anesthesia All about anesthesia to give to your clients.

Signs of pain in the horse

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Methods of providing analgesia

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Other methods of providing analgesia

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • van Loon J P A M (2014) Multimodal strategies for equine analgesia, one step beyond... Equine Vet Educ 26 (2), 72-74.
  • Michou J & Leece E (2012) Sedation and analgesia in the standing horse 2. Local anaesthesia and analgesia techniques. In Pract 34 (10), 578-587 VetMedResource.
  • Michou J & Leece E (2012) Sedation and analgesia in the standing horse 1. Drugs used for sedation and systemic analgesia. In Pract 34 (9), 524-531 VetMedResource.
  • Hubbell J A E, Saville W J A & Bednarski R M (2010) The use of sedatives, analgesic and anaesthetic drugs in the horse: An electronic survey of members of the Americal Association of Equine Practitioners (AAEP). Equine Vet J 42 (6), 487-493 PubMed.
  • Coomer R (2007) Colic Part 1: History, pain and analgesics. UK Vet 12 (2), 5-10 VetMedResource.
  • Roethlisberger Holm K et al (2006) Effect of local analgesia on movement of the equine back. Equine Vet J 38 (1), 65-69 PubMed.
  • Hubbell J A E & Muir W W (2004) Use of the alpha-2 agonists xylazine and detomidine in the perianaesthetic period in the horse. Equine Vet Educ 16 (6), 326-332 VetMedResource.
  • Clark J O et al (1999) Analgesia. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract 15 (3), 705-723 PubMed.
  • Muir W W (1998) Anesthesia and pain management in horses. Equine Vet Educ 10 (6), 335-340 VetMedResource.
  • England G C et al (1996) Alpha 2 adrenoceptor agonists in the horse - a review. Br Vet J 152 (6), 641-657 PubMed.
  • Owens H G et al (1996) Evaluation of detomidine-induced analgesia in horses with chronic hoof pain. J Pharmacol Exp Ther 278 (1), 179-184 PubMed.
  • Owens J G et al (1995) Effects of ketoprofen and phenylbutazone on chronic hoof pain and lameness in the horse. Equine Vet J 27 (4), 296-300 PubMed.
  • Miller S M et al (1995) Quantitative electroencephalographic evaluation to determine the quality of analgesia during anesthesia of horses for arthroscopic surgery. Am J Vet Res 56 (3), 374-379 PubMed.
  • Hubbell J A et al (1994) Emergency analgesia and chemical restraint in the horse. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract 10 (3), 503-516 PubMed.
  • Johnson C B et al (1993) Post-operative analgesia using phenylbutazone, flunixin or carprofen in horses. Vet Rec 133 (14), 336-338 PubMed.
  • Geiser D R (1990) Chemical restraint and analgesia in the horse. Vet Clin North Am Equine Pract 6 (3), 495-512 PubMed.


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