Abstracts: Pain management in pigs undergoing experimental surgery; a literature review (2012-4)

Failure to provide effective analgesia to animals in noxious studies contravenes the obligation to refine animal experimentation and, by increasing ‘noise’ in physiological data sets, may decrease the scientific validity of results.

Pig models of surgical conditions are becoming increasingly important and used for translational work. This review aimed to determine the extent to which the recent biomedical literature describes pain assessment and alleviation in pigs recovering from experimental surgery. Continue reading Abstracts: Pain management in pigs undergoing experimental surgery; a literature review (2012-4)

Abstracts: Use of analgesic drugs for pain management in sheep

Awareness of pain and its effects is increasing within the veterinary profession, but pain management in food animals has been neglected. Sheep seldom receive analgesics despite various conditions, husbandry practice and experimental procedures being known to be painful, eg footrot, mastitis, vaginal prolapse, castration, vasectomy, penis deviation, and laparoscopy. The evidence supporting use of analgesic drugs in this species is reviewed here. Opioid agonists are of dubious efficacy and are short acting. α(2)-agonists such as xylazine are good, short-lived analgesics, but induce hypoxaemia. Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAID) such as ketoprofen provide long-lasting analgesia, but not as marked as that from α(2)-agonists; they should be more widely used for inflammatory pain. Local anaesthetics reliably block pain signals, but may also induce motor blockade. Balanced analgesia using more than one class of drug, such as an α(2) agonist (eg medetomidine) and N-methyl-D-aspartate antagonist (eg ketamine), with the combination selected for the circumstances, probably provides the best analgesia for severe pain. It should be noted that there are no approved analgesic drugs for use in sheep and therefore the use of such drugs in this species has to be off-label. This information may be useful to veterinary practitioners, biomedical researchers, and regulators in animal welfare to develop rational analgesic regimens which ultimately may improve the health and welfare of sheep in both farming and experimental conditions. Continue reading Abstracts: Use of analgesic drugs for pain management in sheep

Attitudes towards perception and management of pain in rabbits and guinea pigs by a sample of veterinarians in New Zealand

AIMS: To determine the perceptions of a sample of veterinarians in New Zealand regarding pain and pain management in rabbits and guinea pigs.

METHODS: Questionnaires were distributed to all members of the Companion Animal Society, part of the New Zealand Veterinary Association. The questionnaire gathered information on the demographics of respondents, obtained an assessment by veterinarians of the level of pain associated with clinical procedures for rabbits and guinea pigs, established the willingness of respondents to perform these, obtained information on the anaesthetics and analgesics used during these procedures, and the factors associated with selecting different types of drug.

The level of knowledge of respondents and interest in continuing education regarding pain recognition and management in these species was also assessed. Continue reading Attitudes towards perception and management of pain in rabbits and guinea pigs by a sample of veterinarians in New Zealand