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Vet Clin North Am Food Anim Pract. 2013 Mar;29(1):75-101. doi: 10.1016/j.cvfa.2012.11.002.

Assessment and management of pain associated with castration in cattle.

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Department of Veterinary Diagnostic and Production Animal Medicine, College of Veterinary Medicine, Iowa State University, Ames, IA 50011, USA.


Validated pain assessment tools are needed to support approval of analgesic compounds to alleviate pain associated with castration. Accelerometers, videography, heart rate variability, electroencephalography, thermography, and plasma neuropeptide measurement to assess behavioral, physiologic, and neuroendocrine changes associated with castration are discussed. Preemptive local and systemic analgesia are also reviewed. Previous studies found that preemptive administration of nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drug (NSAID) and local anesthesia significantly decreased peak serum cortisol concentration after castration. Local anesthesia alone tended to decrease peak cortisol concentrations more than NSAIDs, whereas NSAIDs alone tended to decrease the area under the cortisol-time curve more than local anesthesia alone.

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