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Use of firocoxib for the treatment of equine osteoarthritis

Authors Donnell J, Frisbie D

Received 28 June 2014

Accepted for publication 2 September 2014

Published 4 November 2014 Volume 2014:5 Pages 159—168

DOI https://doi.org/10.2147/VMRR.S70207

Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single-blind

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Professor Takashi Agui


Josh R Donnell, David D Frisbie

Department of Clinical Sciences, Orthopedic Research Center, Colorado State University, Fort Collins, CO, USA

Abstract: This review presents the pathogenesis and medical treatment of equine osteoarthritis (OA), focusing on firocoxib. Inhibition of prostaglandin E2 remains a fundamental treatment for decreasing clinical symptoms (ie, pain and lameness) associated with OA in horses. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), which inhibit the production of prostaglandin E2 from the arachidonic acid pathway, continue to be a mainstay for the clinical treatment of OA. Firocoxib is a cyclooxygenase (COX)-2-preferential NSAID that has been shown to be safe and to have a 70% oral bioavailability in the horse. Three clinical reports identified symptom-modifying effects (reduction in pain and/or lameness) in horses with OA administered the once-daily recommended dose (0.1 mg/kg) of oral firocoxib following 7 days of administration. Other reports have suggested that a one-time loading dose (0.3 mg/kg) of firocoxib provides an earlier (1–3 days) onset of action compared to the recommended dose. It is noteworthy that OA disease-modifying effects have been reported in horses for other COX-2-preferential NSAIDs (meloxicam and carprofen), but have not been attributed to firocoxib due to a lack of investigation to date.

Keywords: horse, osteoarthritis, firocoxib, COX-2 inhibitor, NSAID

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