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Efficacy of furosemide for prevention of exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage in Thoroughbred racehorses.

Author(s): Hinchcliff KW, Morley PS, Guthrie AJ

Affiliation(s): Faculty of Veterinary Science, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, VIC 3030, Australia.

Publication date & source: 2009-07-01, J Am Vet Med Assoc., 235(1):76-82.

Publication type: Controlled Clinical Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the efficacy of furosemide for prevention of exercise-induced pulmonary hemorrhage (EIPH) in Thoroughbred racehorses under typical racing conditions. DESIGN: Randomized, placebo-controlled, blinded, crossover field trial. ANIMALS: 167 Thoroughbred racehorses. PROCEDURES: Horses were allocated to race fields of 9 to 16 horses each and raced twice, 1 week apart, with each of the 2 races consisting of the same race field and distance. Each horse received furosemide (500 mg, IV) before one race and a placebo (saline solution) before the other, with the order of treatments randomly determined. Severity of EIPH was scored on a scale from 0 to 4 after each race by means of tracheobronchoscopy. Data were analyzed by means of various methods of multivariable logistic regression. RESULTS: Horses were substantially more likely to develop EIPH (severity score >or= 1; odds ratio, 3.3 to 4.4) or moderate to severe EIPH (severity score >or= 2; odds ratio, 6.9 to 11.0) following administration of saline solution than following administration of furosemide. In addition, 81 of the 120 (67.5%) horses that had EIPH after administration of saline solution had a reduction in EIPH severity score of at least 1 when treated with furosemide. CONCLUSIONS AND CLINICAL RELEVANCE: Results indicated that prerace administration of furosemide decreased the incidence and severity of EIPH in Thoroughbreds racing under typical conditions in South Africa.

Page last updated: 2009-10-20

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