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Vet J. 2014 Nov;202(2):353-60. doi: 10.1016/j.tvjl.2014.08.019. Epub 2014 Aug 22.

Haemodynamic interactions of medetomidine and the peripheral alpha-2 antagonist MK-467 during step infusions in isoflurane-anaesthetised dogs.

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Department of Equine and Small Animal Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Helsinki, Finland. Electronic address:
GREPAQ, Department of Veterinary Biomedical Sciences, Université de Montréal, St. Hyacinthe, Quebec, Canada.
Department of Equine and Small Animal Medicine, Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Helsinki, Finland.


The haemodynamic interactions of a step infusion with medetomidine (MED) and the peripherally acting alpha-2 antagonist MK-467 (MK) were compared with MED infused alone in isoflurane-anaesthetised dogs. Eight purposely-bred Beagles were used in a randomised crossover study. Anaesthesia was induced with propofol intravenously (IV) and maintained with isoflurane in oxygen. Dogs received 1.25 µg/kg MED as a 1 min loading dose IV, along with a step-down MED infusion at rates of 8.0 µg/kg/h (step 1: 0-20 min), 5.5 µg/kg/h (step 2: 20-40 min) and 4.0 µg/kg/h (step 3: 40-95 min). Five minutes after starting the MED infusion, the dogs received MK-467 in a step-up infusion at rates of 100 µg/kg/h (step 1: 5-35 min), 200 µg/kg/h (step 2: 35-65 min) and 500 µg/kg/h (step 3: 65-95 min). Heart rate (HR), systolic (SAP) and mean arterial (MAP) blood pressures and arteriovenous oxygen content differences (a-vO2 diff) were calculated. Plasma drug concentrations were analysed. Repeated-measures general linear mixed models with Bonferroni correction were used for statistical analyses. MED infusion alone increased SAP maximally by 24.9%, MAP by 34.7% and a-vO2 diff by 222.5%, and reduced HR by 32.3%, but these changes were significantly attenuated by MK-467. Most MED effects returned to baseline during step 2 of MK-467 infusion and step 3 of MED infusion (MED/MK-467 ratio 1:18 to 1:50). Plasma concentrations of MED tended to be lower with the addition of MK-467. The use of step infusions helped to narrow down the therapeutic range for the MED/MK-467 infusion dose ratio during isoflurane anaesthesia in dogs.


Alpha-2 agonist; Dog; MK-467; Medetomidine; Peripheral alpha-2 antagonist

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