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Papers of the Week

2019 Jul 24

Sci Rep



Administration of Tramadol or Buprenorphine via the drinking water for post-operative analgesia in a mouse-osteotomy model.


Jirkof P, Durst M, Klopfleisch R, Palme R, Thöne-Reineke C, Buttgereit F, Schmidt-Bleek K, Lang A
Sci Rep. 2019 Jul 24; 9(1):10749.
PMID: 31341225.


Adequate analgesia is essential whenever pain might occur in animal experiments. Unfortunately, the selection of suitable analgesics for mice in bone-linked models is limited. Here, we evaluated two analgesics – Tramadol [0.1 mg/ml (T) vs. 1 mg/ml (T)] and Buprenorphine (Bup; 0.009 mg/ml) – after a pre-surgical injection of Buprenorphine, in a mouse-osteotomy model. The aim of this study was to verify the efficacy of these opioids in alleviating pain-related behaviors, to provide evidence for adequate dosages and to examine potential side effects. High concentrations of Tramadol affected water intake, drinking frequency, food intake and body weight negatively in the first 2-3 days post-osteotomy, while home cage activity was comparable between all groups. General wellbeing parameters were strongly influenced by anesthesia and analgesics. Model-specific pain parameters did not indicate more effective pain relief at high concentrations of Tramadol. In addition, ex vivo high-resolution micro computed tomography (µCT) analysis and histology analyzing bone healing outcomes showed no differences between analgesic groups with respect to newly formed mineralized bone, cartilage and vessels. Our results show that high concentrations of Tramadol do not improve pain relief compared to low dosage Tramadol and Buprenorphine, but rather negatively affect animal wellbeing.