Department of Companion Animal Clinical Sciences, Kasetsart University, Bangkok, Thailand
Various analgesic agents including non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) have been shown to be effective for pain control in cats. Firocoxib, a NSAIDs classified as a selective COX-2 inhibitor, has been successfully used in dogs; however, the efficacy of firocoxib in cats remains elusive.
The purpose of a present study was to study the post-operative analgesic effects of firocoxib in cats undergoing ovariohysterectomy.
Twenty-four cats were divided into 3 groups including a control (no medicine), a firocoxib-1 (1 mg/kg/day) and a firocoxib-3 (3 mg/kg/day). The NSAIDs were given at 1 h before induction with propofol 4–6 mg/kg IV, followed by anesthesia maintenance with isoflurane. Colorado pain scores were recorded in blinded fashion before induction (base line) and 2, 5, 8, 24, 30, and 48 hours following the recovery.
The average baseline of Colorado pain scores from control, firocoxib-1 and firocoxib-3 groups were not different (0.4 ± 0.2, 0.3 ± 0.1, and 0.5 ± 0.2, respectively; p-value > 0.05). The average Colorado pain scores recordings to 48 hours post-operation from firocoxib-3 groups (0.4 ± 0.1) were significantly lower than that of control group (0.7 ± 0.2; p-value = 0.004). However, no significant difference was found between the average pain scores of firocoxib-1 (0.5 ± 0.2) and control groups (p-value = 0.12). One cat from firocoxib-3 treated group vomited one time at 48 hours post-operation.
The present study suggests that firocoxib-3 is helpful for post-operative pain control in cats; however, gastrointestinal irritation due to the use of NSAIDs may occur.