, or Isoxsuprine hydrochloride
, is a drug used as a vasodilator
Use in equines
Reasons for use and controversy
Isoxsuprine is most commonly used to treat hoof-related problems in the horse, most commonly for laminitis
and navicular disease
, as its effects as a vasodilator are thought to increase circulation within the hoof to help counteract the problems associated with these conditions.
There are many veterinarians—and horsemen—who do not believe isoxsuprine to be effective. Its use is therefore rather controversial within the veterinary field.
Precautions and side-effects
Isoxsuprine may increase the animal's heart rate, cause changes in blood pressure, and irritate the GI tract. It should therefore be used with caution if conbined with other drugs that affect blood pressure, such as sedatives
drugs Because it is a vasodilator, it should not be used in horses that are bleeding, or in mares following foaling.
Isoxsuprine is a prohibited class B drug in FEI-regulated competition, and is often prohibited by other equine associations. It may be detected in the urine for several weeks or months following administration. It is therefore important to check the drug-rules within an animal's given competitive organization, before administering the drug.
Isoxsurpine is given orally, and many horses find the pills quite palatable.
Forney, Barbara C, MS, VMD.Equine Medications, Revised Edition. Blood Horse Publications. Lexington, KY. Copyright 2007.